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High blood pressure is known as the silent killer, according to the American Heart Association (AHA), because it usually has no symptoms. A normal blood pressure should be 120/80. If it is more than 140/90, you are in the high-risk group and should consult your doctor. A single reading showing an elevation does not mean you have high blood pressure, but it is a sign that you need to watch it carefully. According to the AHA, having untreated high blood pressure increases your risk for heart attack and stroke.

Categorizing Blood Pressure 

Blood Pressure
Systolic mm Hg
(upper #)
 Diastolic mm Hg
(lower #)
Normalless than 120andless than 80
Prehypertension120 - 129orless than 80
High Blood Pressure (Hypertension) Stage 1130 - 139or80 - 89
High Blood Pressure (Hypertension) Stage 2140 or higheror90 or higher

*This chart reflects blood pressure categories defined by the American Heart Association.

Finding Treatment

If your blood pressure:

  • Is 120/80 - 139/89 mm Hg (prehypertension)
  • Is 140/90 mm Hg or higher (high blood pressure)
  • Has been deemed high by a healthcare professional

It's time to discuss treatment options with your doctor. High blood pressure increases your risk for heart disease, as well as many other heart conditions. Schedule an appointment with a Memorial Hermann Cardiologist online or by calling (713) 222-2273