hypertension

As we've noted before, the amount of sodium an adult should consume has been, and still is, a bone of contention, with some experts finding that current recommendations (less than 2300 mgm/day) are off the mark (too low) and that other dietary items, such as potassium, should be given more attention. Along these lines is a new...

Mention high blood pressure and most of the diet-conscious among us think "lower salt intake" to manage it. And there has been controversy about who should decrease their salt consumption and by how much — as we've previously discussed. What's less often addressed is the role of potassium (K+) in the management of hypertension (HTN). However, a recent review in the American Journal of Physiology addresses the possibility that diets higher in K+ may well be as important a means of reducing the toll of HTN — thus decreasing the prevalence of cardiovascular and kidney diseases.

Led by Dr. Alicia A. McDonough, a...

All too frequently, the things we do daily become routine.  This is likely true of many tasks in a multitude of professions.  It’s just that in certain fields, like medicine, seemingly mundane and tedious duties can—all too often— provide the most valuable knowledge of a patient’s well-being and genuine health status.

Vital signs matter.  They matter most when done correctly and provide accurate data.  Hence, why they are likely called “vital” signs.

Dismiss them or do them incorrectly and the bad information obtained will guide medical decisions on your behalf-- potentially toward a negative trajectory.  Now, with electronic medical records, especially, this erroneous information will follow you and your future care may be directed based on these false results.   

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It isn’t hard to imagine that as our enlarging and ever-stiffening polarized political spheres come to a head, an article about what maintains the penis’ potency might be a kind of crowning glory.

To start, let’s give you a sturdy grasp of what prompts erectile dysfunction (ED) firming up any confusion.

More than 30 million men in the United States are affected by ED to some extent, so prevalence is certainly high (1).

The mechanism to control a man’s ability to get erect and maintain it is quite complex.  The point and shoot components are controlled by your sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems.  When there is impairment in either arena, there is a flawed rigidity or ejaculation.  

When nerves are firing and blood is flowing, this pleasurable...

The prevalence of dementia in the United States significantly declined from 11.6% in 2000 to 8.8% in 2012.  A new study by JAMA Internal Medicine attributes this, in part, to an increase in educational attainment. 

Dementia has multiple causes and types.  It reflects damage to the nerve cells of the brain which can appear in varying locales.  Symptoms of memory loss and cognitive changes manifest differently depending on the individual, medical history and etiology.  

Alzheimer’s is the most common culprit in those 65 and older.  Right behind is vascular damage of the vessels that...

shutterstock_203943361 Potato Harvesting via Shutterstock

Many's the time we have pointed out the problem with putting too much faith in epidemiological associations — that is, thinking that an association between two factors in people's lives means that one causes the other. Take beta-carotene, for example. Epidemiological associations suggested that beta-carotene, a precursor to vitamin A, might protect people from lung cancer. But after the surge in sales of beta-carotene supplements had taken off, the results of a randomized, placebo-...

It's widely understood that obesity is often linked to high blood pressure. And BP is a leading risk factor for heart disease and stroke, as well as kidney problems, and it increases the risk of Type-2 diabetes and metabolic derangements. Now, more bad news: this is also true for children and adolescents, as well as for adults. Unfortunately, the longer the BP is elevated, the more likely it will have a negative impact on health. In a three-year study, Dr. Emily D. Parker of the HealthPartners Institute for Education and Research, Bloomington, Minn. and colleagues, utilized data from three health systems in California, Colorado and Minnesota. They tracked over 100,000 children and adolescents (ages 3-17 years) between 2007 and 2011. Obesity was defined for these youngsters as having a...

via shutterstock.com via shutterstock.com

About one in 10 American women report moderate or severe symptoms of prementrual syndrome (PMS). A recent study published in the American Journal of Epidemiology supports the theory that women with relatively severe symptoms have an increased likelihood of developing high blood pressure and that hypertension risk is especially high in occurring earlier in life, before age 40.

The...

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Courtesy of AMA: Age-Adjusted Death Rates, M/F.Total

A fairly detailed study published in the current JAMA explores the temporal trends of deaths in the United States between 1969 and 2013. It's mainly good news. The authors, led by Drs. Jiemin Ma and...

909105_45608666Yes, if you have hypertension (HTN, or high blood pressure), your risk of cardiovascular ills heart attack or stroke is increased. We ve known that for decades, and lowering blood pressure (BP) in hypertensive people with a variety of drugs has been shown to decrease these risks. But the question still remains how low should blood pressure go?

To answer this question, a large study is underway with hypertensive patients. Half are assigned to get their systolic...