High blood pressure (hypertension) is widely misunderstood by laymen, according to a published summary by London's Dr. Harry Johnson, a specialist in executive health examinations. He makes these points:
Excessive emotional tension is not - as a lot of middle-aged men believe - a root cause of high blood pressure. If a man is under stress his blood pressure may rise, but this is only "-90% of all high blood pressure cases - is organic and physical in its nature. The cause is unknown. (True, it's often related to overweight, but obesity isn't a basic cause.)
Another misconception involves the systolic (higher) pressure reading. For example, "100 plus your age" isn't necessarily normal. Actually, 100 to 140 is the normal range - but the closer to 100, the better. An elevated diastolic pressure (the lower reading) - above 90 - is more significant. Finally, headaches, nosebleeds, flushed face, and such rarely indicate high blood pressure. Only a series of readings will reveal it.
Of all the medical disasters that can befall an active, productive businessman, a paralyzing stroke is among the worst. The statistics are grim: Some 30% of stroke victims die in the first week following the attack; only three or four out of every 10 who do survive that first dangerous period ever recover sufficiently to return to work.
Yet strokes rarely come without some warning. Many could be prevented if the early signs were recognized and the underlying causes treated swiftly and effectively. Some of the danger signs may seem so minor as to go unnoticed: momentary dizziness, brief blurring of vision, temporary numbness in a foot or hand. These provide reason enough for consulting... see: Stroke: Grim Prospects, And Hopes