November 19, 2019
Dr. Aajay Shah – Hypertension

Dr. Aajay Shah – Hypertension

– Hello everyone, my
name is Dr. Aajay Shah, I work for Oaklawn Hospital in Marshall and I’m the full-time cardiologist here. Today we’re gonna talk
about various topics on how to prevent and
reverse the heart disease. Today we’re gonna talk
about high blood pressure, commonly known as hypertension. Whenever we talk about high
blood pressure or hypertension, there are two numbers
I want you all to know. First number is the
systolic blood pressure. And second number is the
diastolic blood pressure. When you talk about
systolic blood pressure, that’s the top number when
you go to see your doctor. And diastolic is the bottom number. Systolic blood pressure
is the one when your heart muscle contracts and creates the pressure. And diastolic pressure is the one when your blood vessels
come back from the recoil and creates the pressure. Both numbers are very important. We know now the systolic blood pressure, the top number, should be below 120. The newer studies have shown the blood pressure below 120 is ideal. Until now we used to think
systolic blood pressure below 140 is good, but now we have enough proof that lowering to 120 is better. So if you are having high blood pressure for last many years, try to get your blood
pressure down to 120. The diastolic pressure we need to bring it down as 85 or below. Sometimes in an older population, we keep the systolic blood
pressure at around 140, but typically those things are exceptions. Most patients should have their
blood pressure lower to 120. Fortunately, over the last 25, 30 years, we have now, newer, safer, better medications available
with very little side effects. And fortunately, many of them, actually most of them have now gone generic over
the last three to five years. So I tell my patients now that I probably could control
anyone’s blood pressure for less than $15 a month. So nobody should have excuse anymore to control the blood pressure in terms of having too high of a cost. High blood pressure
affects the whole body. We call it a silent killer, because when you have a high blood pressure, it does not hurt. Sometimes you hear that “I have a headache from
high blood pressure,” but that’s rare. Most people, when they
have a high blood pressure, they do not have any
symptoms and they feel fine. But then it gets them with a stroke, with a heart attack, with kidney failure, and many times they say,
“I was feeling fine.” So we call it a silent killer. High blood pressure is very responsible for having blocked arteries in the heart we call coronary disease. High blood pressure is one of the risk factors for blocked
arteries in the heart. High blood pressure is one of the most common reason for having stroke. And when I talk to my patients,
most patients will say, “I’d rather die then have a stroke.” And I agree with that, because stroke is not just
a disability for the patient but it’s a big, big work, and disability and pain and lot of suffering
for the family members too. So let’s prevent the stroke. High blood pressure also
can cause kidney damage and many patients will go on dialysis. High blood pressure
also can cause blindness and eye changes, so controlling high blood pressure is very critical. Most of the time when I see a patient, when most doctors see a patient, we can bring the blood
pressure down within six to eight weeks, and that’s a
goal I set with all my patients that will bring your blood
pressure in six to eight weeks. But thing I highly
recommend all my patients is to buy a automatic blood
pressure machine at home where they just put a
cuff around their arm, press a button on an automatic machine and it reads the reading
within one minute. The company I use is called
Omron Automatic Blood Pressure. Fortunately the cost has come
down with those machines also, and you can purchase a
simple automatic machine for $45 at a Walmart or
Meyer or a local pharmacy. So I highly recommend all the patients who have high blood pressure
to have their own machine. We also know now that there is a condition called whitecoat
hypertension which is, when you come and see me, your blood pressure
sometimes could be high. And sometimes we don’t
want to raise the medicine or we don’t want to add a
medicine if your blood pressure at home and your natural
normal life is running normal. So having this blood pressure
machine at home gives me and gives you a confidence that the blood pressure is
always controlled except once in a while when you see a doctor. So purchasing an automatic
machine is very critical. Many patients tell me that they have side effects of medicine. Now we have so many options in terms of medicine that we
can easily change the medicine which suits your profile, suits your bodily needs, and nobody should have an excuse to not take the blood
pressure medicine properly. To give you an example, I have a friend, a physician friend, whose blood pressure wasn’t controlled, and he actually ended
up having a major stroke and became disabled at a young age, and now he’s not able to work. So not controlling blood pressure leading to complications is a real thing and I’m hoping that none of our patients or none of my community
members will ever need to go through a complication
of blood pressure. I’m always available. If your blood pressure is having
difficulty in controlling, you can always call our office. You can always come and see me. If it’s running very
high like 160 or higher, I can see you same day and start working to
control your blood pressure. Controlling blood pressure
also requires some work on the patient side also. Lowering salt in your diet, eating a DASH type diet, D-A-S-H. DASH diet stands for dietary approach to stop hypertension, DASH diet. So I want you to look it
up online called DASH diet. DASH diet essentially involves
eating lot of vegetables, lot of fresh fruits, lot of dairy, and having high potassium foods, and controlling salt in your diet. We have proof now that eating
DASH type diet can lower your blood pressure as small
as 10 millimeter of mercury, which is almost taking one
to one and half medication. Regular walking, walking 20 to 30 minutes four to five
times a week can also lower your blood pressure by two to
four millimeter of mercury. Performing some kind
of relaxation technique like meditation 10 to 15 minutes once or twice a day also will
lower your blood pressure. Learning how to cope with stress on a day-to-day base also will
lower your blood pressure. Having an adequate, sound
deep sleep also will lower your blood pressure. So obviously I will do my part to control your blood pressure, but I also urge you to do your part. There are a lot of resources
available on Internet. There are a lot of good books available. I can give you all sorts of resources, but let’s control this blood pressure, let’s prevent the complications, and let’s have the healthy, long life. Thank you.

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