Helping you live your best life

Skip main navigation
Group Created with Sketch.

Need help

What can we help you find?

Related Search Terms

Related Search Results


Hypertension Clinic

Did you know that your kidneys play a crucial role in regulating your blood pressure? That’s why our team at the Hypertension Clinic includes nephrologists (kidney specialists) to help you manage high blood pressure.

If you’re at risk or have recently been diagnosed, we offer a full range of personalized treatment services to meet your unique needs, including:

  • Symptom evaluation
  • Laboratory testing
  • Imaging
  • 24-hour ambulatory blood pressure monitoring
  • Care coordination with other specialists
  • Dietician support

Our clinic is conveniently located inside the Adult Outpatient Pavilion (AOP). We’re open on Wednesdays and Thursdays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

To schedule an appointment, please call (804) 828-2161.

What is hypertension?

Hypertension is the medical term for high blood pressure.

Your blood pressure (BP) is how forcefully your blood flows through your arteries. It’s measured in units of millimeters of mercury (mmHg), with readings in pairs of systolic levels over diastolic levels.

High blood pressure is defined as blood pressure greater than or equal to 130/80 mmHg (meaning, systolic BP is 130+ mmHg and diastolic BP is 80+ mmHg).

Guidelines established by the American College of Cardiology and the American Heart Association categorized hypertension into the following groups:

Category Blood pressure (mmHg)
 Normal blood pressure  Less than120 systolic and
less than 80 diastolic
 Elevated blood pressure

 Between 120-129 systolic andless than 80 diastolic

 Stage 1 hypertension  Between 130-139 systolic or
between 80-89 diastolic
 Stage 2 hypertension

 More than 140 systolic or
more than 90 diastolic

What is secondary hypertension?

Most people with high blood pressure have primary or idiopathic hypertension. The cause is unknown. But around 10% of people with high blood pressure have secondary hypertension. That means they have another health condition that makes it more likely they’ll have high blood pressure or that directly causes it.

These common conditions can lead to secondary hypertension include:

  • Primary hyperaldosteronism and Cushing`s syndrome (overactive adrenal gland disorder)
  • Graves’ disease (overactive thyroid disorder)
  • Kidney disease
  • Renal artery stenosis (blocked kidney artery)
  • Sleep apnea

Certain clinical characteristics can be a sign that you have an underlying medical condition contributing to your elevated blood pressure. That includes high blood pressure that starts before the age of 30 or poorly controlled hypertension despite the use of three or more medications. Managing that underlying condition may result in improved blood pressure control — and possibly even reverse it.

Why is managing high blood pressure important?

High blood pressure is the number one risk factor for death worldwide. It’s also the most common disease in the United States. According to the most recent data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), about half of American adults live with hypertension. And only one in four maintains proper control over their condition.

If you don’t manage your hypertension well, you’re at a much higher risk of heart attack, heart failure, stroke and kidney failure.

How to take an accurate blood pressure reading

At every clinic visit, we’ll take your blood pressure. To get the most accurate reading, there are steps we both need to take.

We’ll do our part to:

  • Give you a comfortable chair with adequate back support.
  • Keep the environment quiet and calm.
  • Keep your arm in alignment with your heart level.
  • Position the cuff properly on your undressed arm.
  • Use the right size cuff.

For your part, we need you to:

  • Empty your bladder.
  • Keep legs uncrossed and back straight during assessment.
  • Sit calmly with legs uncrossed for at least five minutes before assessment.
  • Stop consuming caffeine for at least 30 minutes before assessment.
  • Stop smoking for at least 30 minutes before assessment.

Follow these same guidelines when measuring your blood pressure at home, too. Neglecting any of these steps may increase BP readings by 2-10 mmHg.

What is the significance of self-measured blood pressure?

Regularly monitoring your blood pressure is really important. It’s how you stay on top of it before it gets out of control. But we can’t be with you 24/7 — although we wish we could.

That’s where self-measured blood pressure (SMBP) comes in.

Self-measured blood pressure is the routine practice of monitoring your own blood pressure at home or in any other non-clinical setting — so basically, anywhere you feel comfortable doing it. SMBP is important because it can help detect conditions like:

  • Masked hypertension (when blood pressure appears normal in a clinical setting but is elevated elsewhere, like at home)
  • White coat hypertension (where blood pressure is high in a clinical setting but normal outside of it).

These out-of-clinic BP readings help our team accurately assess your blood pressure control. We can also then make any necessary adjustments to your medication and care.

Additional information on SMBP can be found at Target: BP.