Thursday, February 08, 2007

High Blood Pressure In Children

As is kids don't have enough sickness to deal with in this modern age like being overweight, chicken pox, mumps and measles. Now add high blood pressure is among children's medical woes.

A recent study in the Journal of the American Medical association found a strong upward shift in the blood pressure levels among 5,582 American children aged 8 to 18 who were tracked for the last 16 years. From 1988 up to 1994, the children's average systolic blood pressure was 104.6 mm Hg and their average diastolic pressure was 58.4 mm Hg. By 1999 to 2000 their average systolic pressure was 106 mm Hg and their average diastolic reading was 61.7 mm Hg.

A big reason for the blood pressure problem among American kids is that too many of them are carrying too much weight. An estimated 15 percent of American children between 6 and 19 are overweight, according to the U.S Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. But other factors such as poor diets and a lack of exercise are also to blame.

In response to the blood pressure problem and its potential health implications, the American Heart association has published guidelines to help doctors and parents focus on the risks of cardiovascular disease in children and the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) is formulating new clinical guidelines that revise blood pressure tables and recommended lifestyle and drug therapies for children with high blood pressure, also known as hypertension.



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