Cardiovascular (heart) disease is one of Neuland’s core therapeutic areas, with multiple Neuland products in the space. It’s also the leading cause of death worldwide, and (sadly…for the sake of our health) business is booming with continued segment growth projected through the end of the decade.
Hypertension – high blood pressure – is considered the top risk factor for premature heart disease – increasing the likelihood of heart failure, stroke, vascular disease and more. But it’s not a trendy disease or a newsworthy illness.
Instead – hypertension is a stealth killer hiding in plain sight, with 30+% of adults over 20 years old worldwide suffering the effects of hypertension (76 million in the U.S.). In 2000, it was reported to affect over one billion people worldwide. It also accounts for more than half of all strokes and nearly half of all ischemic heart disease (the most common type of heart disease, and the leading cause of heart attacks).
Most alarming – and the reason I term it a ‘stealth killer:’ more than half of those who suffer from hypertension are unaware of their condition. So while it may not be screaming from the headlines every day, it’s certainly prevalent & dangerous enough to warrant it.
High blood pressure is generally a chronic condition, with as many as 90-95% of cases involving no underlying medical cause. It’s also a manageable condition through lifestyle changes and, in some cases, medication.
Lifestyle Changes & Medications
Changing dietary habits, getting sufficient aerobic exercise and losing weight are all important steps a person can take to reduce their blood pressure (and the associated risks of hypertension). From a dietary standpoint, decreasing sodium intake is an important step towards lowering blood pressure. The U.S. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute’s DASH diet, for example, offers additional hypertension reduction dietary strategies.
There are also a number of classes of drugs available to treat hypertension, which a doctor may prescribe in addition to lifestyle changes. Recommendations on first-line drug treatment of choice vary worldwide.
Since multiple drugs are sometimes used to treat hypertension, it’s important that a physician oversee patient care, since certain drug combinations can lead to adverse health effects (e.g., certain calcium blockers combined with beta blockers).
Do you have your blood pressure checked regularly?