Systolic Blood Pressure

High Blood Pressure
What is systolic blood pressure?
Systolic pressure is the force of blood in the arteries as the heart beats. It is shown as the top number in a heart blood pressure reading. High blood pressure is 140 and higher for systolic pressure. Diastolic pressure does not need to be high for you to have high blood pressure. When that happens, the condition is called "isolated systolic hypertension," or ISH.
Is isolated systolic high blood pressure common?
Yes. It is the most common form of high blood pressure for older Americans. For most Americans, systolic blood pressure increases with age, while diastolic increases until about age 55 and then declines. About 65 percent of hypertensives over age 60 have ISH. You may have ISH and feel fine. As with other types, ISH often causes no high blood pressure symptoms. To find out if you have ISH - or any type of high blood pressure - see your physician and have a blood pressure test. The test is quick and painless.
Is isolated systolic high blood pressure dangerous?
Any form of high blood pressure is dangerous if not properly treated. Both numbers in a blood pressure test are important, but, for some, the systolic is especially meaningful. That's because, for those persons middle aged and older, systolic pressure gives a better diagnosis of high blood pressure.

If left uncontrolled, high systolic pressure can lead to stroke, heart attack, congestive heart failure, kidney damage, blindness, or other conditions. While it cannot be cured once it has developed, ISH can be controlled with high blood pressure remedies.

Clinical studies have proven that treating a high systolic heart blood pressure saves lives, greatly reduces illness, and improves the quality of life. Yet, most Americans do not have their high systolic pressure under control.

Does it require special treatment?
High blood pressure treatment options for ISH are the same as for other types of high blood pressure, in which both systolic and diastolic pressures are high. ISH is treated with lifestyle changes and/or medications. The key for any high blood pressure treatment is to bring the condition under proper control. Heart blood pressure should be controlled to less than 140/90 mmHg. High blood pressure remedies may involve just a lifestyle or drug change, such as reducing salt in your diet or adding a second medication.
What is diastolic blood pressure?
Diastolic pressure is the force of blood in the arteries as the heart relaxes between beats. It's shown as the bottom number in a blood pressure reading.

The diastolic blood pressure has been and remains, especially for younger people, an important hypertension number. The higher the diastolic blood pressure the greater the risk for heart attacks, strokes and kidney failure. As people become older, the diastolic pressure will begin to decrease and the systolic blood pressure begins to rise and becomes more important. A rise in systolic blood pressure will also increase the chance for heart attacks, strokes, and kidney failure. Your physician will use both the systolic and the diastolic blood pressure to determine your blood pressure category. He/she will then prescribe appropriate prevention activities and initiate high blood pressure treatment.

We also offer a body scan that provides ultrasound imaging of body organs and a test for stroke to check carotid artery blood flow to the brain. This suite of tests including the complete physical exam gives your physician a complete view of your state of health.


Call (847)758-1230 today for an appointment and consultation with our physician.
Serving Chicago, IL and all of the Chicago northwest suburbs, southeastern Wisconsin and northwestern Indiana.


Adapted from the U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health

Physical Exam - Level I includes:

  • Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) Test for prostate cancer
    More . . .
  • CA125 Test for ovarian cancer
    More . . .
Detailed blood pressure evaluation in both arms (seated) and in right arm (recumbent or lying down)      More . . .
Thyroid function profile      More . . .
Resting 12-lead Electrocardiogram (ECG/EKG) recording of electrical activity of the heart      More . . .
Cholesterol/
triglycerides profile      More . . .
Detailed clinical evaluation and consultation by Physician, not Nurse      More . . .
Comprehensive Metabolic Panel      More . . .