National Geographic : 1949 May
Some Facts About HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE inru ll:r~ N ^ Q::: :::TT:::::: . nlurli^Vl/rt~tjinf BLOOD PRESSURE rises when a person is active. After the strain has passed, the pressure gen erally returns to its regular level. If it is per sistently and excessively above normal, how ever, that condition is called hypertension-or high blood pressure. This affects the circulatory system and may lead to serious conditions of the heart, brain, and kidneys. High blood pressure itself is not a disease, but a symptom of some underlying disorder. Medi cal science is constantly increasing its knowl edge of this condition, and is striving for im proved methods of treating it. Special diets have sometimes proved effective. In a limited num ber of cases, surgery has been used. Additional research is concentrating on mental and emo tional factors. There is also hope that newly discovered drugs may prove beneficial. Periodic physical examinations help reveal hypertension early, when doctors say that chances for control are best. Such checkups may also discover possible infections which may be causing the condition. As a result of physical examinations, the doctor may make suggestions for improving your health, such as eating wisely and keeping weight down. The latter is especially important, for high blood pressure is more than twice as common among fat people than it is among per sons of normal weight. TO VETERANS-IF YOU HAVE NATIONAL SERVICE LIFE INSURANCE-KEEP ITI In many high blood pressure cases, the best "medicine" is often simply moderation in every physical and mental activity. The patient may be advised to work and play at a slower pace, to avoid emotional strain, and to get plenty of rest and sleep. This helps to lessen the demands on the circulatory system, and may lower blood pressure. Today, under good medical guidance, the out look for people with high blood pressure is better than ever before. By carefully following the doctor's advice, they can often avoid com plications and look forward to long, useful lives. Aiding in the development of more effective measures to help combat high blood pressure is the Life Insurance Medical Research Fund, supported by 148 Life Insurance Companies. This fund is making grants for research in diseases of the heart and blood vessels, includ ing high blood pressure. For more information, send for Metropoli tan's free booklet, 59N, entitled "Your Heart." This contains many facts about high blood pressure and diseases related to the heart. COPYRIGHT194-METOOPOUITANLFE (ISft ANCeCOMPANY Metropolitan Life Insurance Company (A MUTUAL COMPANY) 1 MA.NisoN AVENUE, NEW YORK 10, N. Y.