Symptoms of High Blood Pressure

Does having high blood pressure give you any symptoms?

Very rarely. Usually it's only picked up if blood pressure is checked routinely, or as part of checks for another medical problem. Occasionally if it is very high, you can get headaches. Even more occasionally, some people feel a bit dizzy, or their vision can be affected.

Other than the blood pressure reading being high, there isn't usually anything for the doctor to find on examination either. If blood pressure has been high for some time, or very high, there can be changes in the blood vessels at the back of the eye.

If there are no high blood pressure symptoms, why is it a problem?

High blood pressure (hypertension) is a risk factor for developing serious health problems sometime in the future. If you have high blood pressure, over the years it may do some damage to your blood vessels (arteries) and put a strain on your heart. In general, the higher your blood pressure, the greater the health risk.

Cardiovascular disease is the biggest risk from having high blood pressure. Cardiovascular diseases are diseases of the heart (cardiac muscle) or blood vessels (vasculature). This usually means diseases of the heart or blood vessels that are caused by atheroma. Patches of atheroma are like small fatty lumps that develop within the inside lining of blood vessels (arteries). Atheroma is also known as atherosclerosis and hardening of the arteries.

Cardiovascular diseases that can be caused by atheroma include:

High blood pressure is just one of several possible risk factors for developing a cardiovascular disease. Others include smoking, having high cholesterol and being overweight.

Reducing high blood pressure means you are less likely to have a stroke or a heart attack and more likely to live longer.

Other health conditions which you would be more prone to if high blood pressure is not treated include:

Did you find this information useful?

Thanks for your feedback!

Why not subcribe to the newsletter?

We would love to hear your feedback!



Author:
Dr Colin Tidy
Peer Reviewer:
Dr Adrian Bonsall
Document ID:
4271 (v46)
Last Checked:
21 September 2017
Next Review:
20 September 2020

Disclaimer: This article is for information only and should not be used for the diagnosis or treatment of medical conditions. Patient Platform Limited has used all reasonable care in compiling the information but make no warranty as to its accuracy. Consult a doctor or other health care professional for diagnosis and treatment of medical conditions. For details see our conditions.