A critical new report declares high blood pressure in the U.S. to be a neglected disease — a term that usually describes mysterious tropical illnesses, not a wellknown plague of rich countries. The prestigious Institute of Medicine said Monday that even though nearly one in three adults has hypertension, and it is on the rise, fighting it apparently has fallen out of fashion: Doctors too often don't treat it aggressively, and the government hasn't made it enough of a priority, either. Yet high blood pressure, the second-leading cause of death in the U.S., is relatively simple to prevent and treat, the institute said. "There's that incredible disconnect," said Dr. David Fleming, Seattle-King County's public health director and chairman of the institute committee that examined how to trim the toll. "In our country, if you live long enough, you're almost guaranteed to get hypertension, so this is something we should all be concerned about," added report co-author Dr. Corinne Husten of the nonpro f i t Partnership for Prevention. This is not rocket science, the report makes clear: Cut the salt. Eat more potassium. Get some exercise. Drop 10 pounds. Those steps could make a big difference in how many people suffer high blood pressure — 73 million at last count.
Report: U.S. fails to fight high blood pressure
Published: Tuesday, February 23rd, 2010
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