High blood pressure (HBP) is a serious condition that can lead to coronary heart disease, heart failure, stroke, kidney failure, and other health problems.

"Blood pressure" is the force of blood pushing against the walls of the arteries as the heart pumps out blood. If this pressure rises and stays high over time, it can damage the body in many ways.

About 1 in 3 adults in the United States has HBP. HBP itself usually has no symptoms. You can have it for years without knowing it. During this time, though, it can damage the heart, blood vessels, kidneys, and other parts of your body.

The information that follows was compiled from the US National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute and the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, and reviewed by PennCME/BestPractice faculty. It includes quizzes to test your knowledge, and polls so that you can see how your answers compare with those of other patients. We hope you find it both interesting and useful.

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