Dr. Richey Talks with Good Morning Texas About the Connection Between High Blood Pressure and Your Kidneys

Each May, health organizations highlight the importance of monitoring blood pressure, as hypertension stands as a major risk factor for heart disease, stroke, and kidney disease. It’s alarming to note that 1 in 3 Americans have high blood pressure but may be unaware due to its often symptomless nature. Uncontrolled high blood pressure can lead to serious health complications.

Dallas Nephrology Associates’ Dr. Daniel Richey joined WFAA Channel 8 in the studio to provide insights into hypertension and its connection to kidney health.

Dr. Richey explains that most cases of high blood pressure are genetic, though diet and lifestyle choices also play significant roles. Occasionally, conditions like sleep apnea or kidney disease can cause hypertension. A normal blood pressure reading is generally less than 130/80, but individual targets may vary based on comorbidities. Regular home measurements of blood pressure are recommended, especially before and after starting medications.

If your blood pressure consistently surpasses 130/80, it’s crucial to consult a doctor. Treatment typically starts with lifestyle modifications such as reducing sodium intake, exercising, quitting smoking, and avoiding alcohol. However, medications are often necessary to manage blood pressure effectively. Hypertension, a blood vessel disease, can damage the small filters in the kidneys over time, leading to a progressive decline in kidney function.

Understanding the causes and treatments of hypertension is essential for preventing its severe consequences on the heart and kidneys. By taking proactive steps and seeking appropriate medical advice, individuals can control their blood pressure and maintain overall health.