Structure & Function of the Heart:
Risk factors for Coronary Artery disease:
Coronary Artery Disease:
Emergency Complications of Heart Attack:
Coronary Artery Bypass Grafting (CABG):
Rheumatic Fever and Heart Valve Diseases:
Heart Transplantation and Assisted devices
High Blood Pressure (Hypertension)
The aortic valve, located at the top of the left ventricle (the chamber of the heart that pumps oxygenated blood to the body) opens and closes with the pressure changes of the heart. The blood pressure is highest at the peak of ventricular contraction. This is the systolic pressure. As the heart builds pressure in its chamber, the aortic valve eventually opens and a surge of blood causes a momentary rise in the pressure on the walls of your arteries.
After the rise in pressure has passed, the heart reduces its pressure; the aortic valve closes and during this relaxed phase of the heart the pressure within the arteries is called the diastolic pressure. The diastolic pressure is the minimal pressure in the arteries at all times.
Too high a blood pressure (hypertension) can eventually result in harm to the body. If the systolic pressure (measured at rest) is considerably higher than normal, there is an increased danger of damaging the kidneys and clogging the blood vessels. An elevated diastolic pressure can be as dangerous as a high systolic reading. If the diastolic pressure is elevated, the heart must work harder to push the blood from its chambers. A high diastolic pressure, uncontrolled over a long period of time, can lead to heart failure.
How blood pressure is Measured:
Blood pressure can be measured in your primary health care provider’s office, at home, or in a store. Recognize that blood pressure is variable and can be affected by many extraneous factors. For this reason, hypertension should not be diagnosed on the basis of a single measurement. Elevated readings should be confirmed by at least two repeated measurements taken at least two minutes apart) on at least two or more subsequent office visits.
Be advised that some people have what is called “white coat hypertension” in which their blood pressure rises when taken in the doctor’s office, only to return to the normal range following the visit.]"' These individuals should consider visiting with their physician or other health care provider about the possibility of “white coat hypertension.
Monitoring blood pressure at home or work by yourself, your family, or your friends can be valuable for the purpose of avoiding “white coat hypertension," assessing response to high blood pressure medication, improving adherence to treatment, and possibly reducing costs. Before measuring your blood pressure, Take care of the following;
Do not use tobacco or caffeine within 30 minutes prior to blood pressure measurement.
Sit in a quiet environment, free from temperature extremes, for at least 5 minutes before measurement is performed.
Sit in a chair with back supported and arms bared; avoid constricting the upper arm with a rolled shirt sleeve. The arm should be supported horizontally so the cuff is positioned at heart level.
Make certain the appropriate cuff size is used to ensure accurate measurement. The bladder in the cuff should encircle at least 80% of the arm. Many adults will require a large adult cuff.
Take measurements with a mercury sphygmomanometer, if available.
Both systolic and diastolic blood pressure should be recorded. The first appearance of sound is used to define systolic blood pressure. The disappearance of sound is used to define diastolic blood pressure.
Two or more readings separated by two minutes should be averaged. lf the first two readings differ by more than 5 mm Hg, obtain additional readings and average.
Classification of Blood pressure:
Lifestyle modification can help prevent the development of high blood pressure and should be the initial treatment approach for the first three to four months for individuals with stage one hypertension.
Reducing the risk of hypertension:
Hypertension is controllable. The benefits of high blood pressure therapy are greatest in individuals with the most elevated blood pressure; however, even persons with stage 1 hypertension can benefit from treatment. If you have high blood pressure or if you want to further prevent your risk for developing hypertension the following lifestyle modifications can be taken to reduce your hypertension or the risk of high blood pressure:
Weight Reduction: Individuals with excessive body weight are at increased risk for high blood pressure. Reducing weight by as little as 10 pounds can result in reduced blood pressure.
Moderation of Alcohol Intake: Excessive alcohol intake can interfere with high blood pressure medication. If an individual does use alcohol, the intake should be limited to no more than two drinks daily for men and one drink daily for women.
Physical Activity: Regular physical activity of at least a moderate level can be effective in preventing and treating hypertension. Sedentary or unfit people who have a normal blood pressure have increased risk of developing hypertension when compared to people who are more active or fit.
Moderation of Dietary Sodium
Quitting Smoking: A significant rise in blood pressure occurs with the smoking of each cigarette. In addition, cigarette smoking is a major risk factor for heart disease and should be avoided and individuals with hypertension should especially avoid cigarette smoking. Smoking may reduce the effectiveness of medication used to treat high blood pressure.
Maintaining normal blood potassium levels: is important for the regulation of blood pressure. A diet high in potassium intake may help prevent the development of high blood pressure, and a diet deficient in potassium may cause an increased blood pressure. In addition, increased potassium can reduce both systolic and diastolic blood pressure.
Relaxation and Biofeedback: A momentary rise in blood pressure can occur with emotional stress and individuals who work in stressful (or “high-strain") employment have higher blood pressure values when compared to those working in less stressful jobs. However, techniques such as relaxation and biofeedback therapy have not yet been shown to effectively treat or prevent high blood pressure.
Antihypertensive Medication: The use of medication has been shown to effectively reduce hypertension and decrease the incidence of heart disease, strokes, heart failure, renal failure, all-cause death rates, and decrease the risk of more severe hypertension. The key to effective management of high blood pressure medication is to work very closely with your physician or other health care provider to determine the most appropriate medication in view of your personal risk factors and to monitor the therapy over time.
Symptoms and signs of heart disease:
NonInvasive diagnostic tests For heart disease:
Invasive Diagnostic Tests for heart disease:
Cardiac Arrythmias and Pacemakers:
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