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About Hypertension

Hypertension (high blood pressure) itself is not a disease and people with hypertension often show no symptoms. However, blood pressure is the most important determinant of life expectancy and hypertension can lead to heart failure, heart attack, kidney failure, a stroke and other serious conditions, such as blindness, with fatal consequences if not treated properly.

 

Western Medicine View

Blood pressure is typically recorded as two numbers - the systolic pressure (as the heart beats) over the diastolic pressure (as the heart relaxes between beats). A consistent blood pressure reading of 140/90 mm Hg or higher is considered high blood pressure, another term for hypertension.

Systolic pressure is the force of blood in the arteries as the heart beats. It is shown as the top number in a 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.

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. Blood pressure should be controlled to less than 140/90 mm Hg. If yours is not, then ask your doctor why. You may just need a lifestyle or drug change, such as reducing salt in your diet or adding a second medication.

 

Chinese Medicine View

Acupuncture has been proved to be an effective treatment for essential hypertension, through clinical trials*.

In China, high blood pressure is referred to as Internal Wind. Low blood pressure on the other hand is regarded as a deficiency of Qi (the body's essential energy) in the blood and the heart. According to Chinese Medicine theory certain Chinese herbs can be prescribed to treat both conditions and to control blood pressure.

Difficult emotions such as worry, anger, resentment and guilt may lead to a stagnation of the essential energy of the Liver (Liver Qi) which, in turn, often leads to heat (Liver-Fire, or Liver-Yang) to form and rise upwards – thus causing hypertension. Years of overwork can deplete the essential energy in the Liver and the cooling energy in the Kidneys. When the Liver and Kidneys are weakened, self-control of anger and worry becomes more difficult and this will cause the hotness of Liver-Yang to rise up uncontrolled and cause hypertension. Formation of phlegm also plays a part in hypertension and is caused by weakness in the Spleen which is a result of irregular diet.

Patients are advised to see their GP first in order to clarify the diagnosis. Those who have already been investigated should bring to AcuMedic the results of the investigations, e.g., reports of kidney function tests and a list of medications they have been taking. Since hypertension often requires lifelong medication even with supportive Chinese medicine treatment, patients wishing to stop or reduce their medication are advised to consult their GPs or consultants before they do so.

 

According to Chinese Medicine theory certain Chinese herbs and acupuncture can be prescribed to treat hypertension. Acupuncture can be used to clear Heat, nourish Yin (the cooling, fluid energy) in order to drain Fire and calm the patient's mind, regulate the ascending Qi and subdue Liver-Yang. The deficiency in Kidneys will also be addressed. Specific herbs will be used to lower blood pressure and extinguish Liver-Wind in addition to strengthening the effect of acupuncture according to CM theory.

 

Lifestyle Advice for the Prevention and Treatment of Hypertension

You should take measures in making dietary and lifestyle changes because many factors such as high salt or alcohol intake and obesity can aggravate hypertension while exercise can be effective in reducing it.

For more information please read our ANTI-STRESS GUIDE.

For personalised advice on diet and lifestyle, please ask the doctor during your consultation. Please be reminded that we offer free online health advice.


-> Click here to contact us using our 'Online Health Advice' Form

 

*CLINICAL TRIALS

Iurenev AP et al. [Use of various non-pharmacological methods in the treatment of patients in the early stages of arterial hypertension.] Terapevticheskii Arkhiv, 1988, 60(1):123-126 [in Russian].

Zhou RX et al. [The hypotensive effect of ear acupressure-an analysis of 274 cases.] China Journal of Traditional Chinese Medicine, 1990, 30(2):99-100 [in Chinese]

Yu P et al. Clinical study on auricular pressure treatment of primary hypertension. International Journal of Clinical Acupuncture, 1991, 2(1):37-40

Wu CX et al. Scalp acupuncture in treating hypertension in the elderly. International Journal of Clinical Acupuncture, 1997, 8(3):281-284.

Dan Y. [Assessment of acupuncture treatment of hypertension by ambulatory blood pressure monitoring.] Chinese Journal of Integrated Traditional and Western Medicine, 1998, 18(1):26-27 [in Chinese]

 

Case Histories

"High blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, coronary arteriosclerosis, night sweats, bloating stomach and severely lacking in energy were just some of the symptoms that I was suffering after my heart bypass surgery five years ago. The first 3 years after the surgery I was doing very well, losing weight and generally enjoying life as I had before with regular visits to the gym, skiing and golf trips. But then two years ago my old lifestyle of too much work and stress crept up on me and my energy level went down to the point that I was feeling there must be something wrong again with my heart."

 

"After five treatment sessions at the world renowned Acumedic clinic in London, the centre for Chinese medicine in the UK, my life has been transformed."

 

"Before I came to see Dr Lily at AcuMedic I was suffering with terrible symptoms and they were seriously affecting my quality of life. Until last year a friend told me about the Acumedic clinic. I was hesitant at first as I had never had any sort of treatment outside of my usual medication. I wasn't convinced it would help but decided to try and give it a go as a last resort anyway. So I went in for my first treatment in September 2007. Had acupuncture, massage and was prescribed a Chinese tea and herb mix to help alleviate my symptoms."

 

"The funny thing was that I noticed the difference immediately. Up to that point I had been sweating heavily and I sat at the dinner table later that day with my wife and she commented on how unusual it was that I was not sweating at all! My blood pressure lowered that day and continued to drop over the following months to where it is now - normal. Only ten months after starting the treatment I have lost 8 kilos. From the following figures you can see, my blood, sugar level is stable, my cholesterol is below normal, my energy is good and even most of my night sweats had disappeared."

 

"My blood pressure went from 110/180 in November 2007 to 70/140 (with decrease in Western medication) in August 2008. My sugar levels went from 10.0 (Long term) to 7.5 (Short term) in November 2007, and in August 2008 they went from8.4 (Long term) to 6.7 (Short term). My Cholesterol was 4.5; HDL=0.7; LDL=2.9 in November 2007, and in August 2008 it was 4.9; HDL=0.9; LDL=3.1."

 

"I was very happy to be able to go on our annual ski trip to Italy this February, something that seemed so unlikely before coming to AcuMedic, and I enjoy my golf as I used to."

 

"On my latest visit in June, everything was normal and stable. I have never seen or heard of such results before, it's quite unbelievable. The most amazing thing for me is of course to see how much the blood pressure went down and the energy and strength went up."

Case Histories

"High blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, coronary arteriosclerosis, night sweats, bloating stomach and severely lacking in energy were just some of the symptoms that I was suffering after my heart bypass surgery five years ago. The first 3 years after the surgery I was doing very well, losing weight and generally enjoying life as I had before with regular visits to the gym, skiing and golf trips. But then two years ago my old lifestyle of too much work and stress crept up on me and my energy level went down to the point that I was feeling there must be something wrong again with my heart."


"After five treatment sessions at the world renowned Acumedic clinic in London, the centre for Chinese medicine in the UK, my life has been transformed."


"Before I came to see Dr Lily at AcuMedic I was suffering with terrible symptoms and they were seriously affecting my quality of life. Until last year a friend told me about the Acumedic clinic. I was hesitant at first as I had never had any sort of treatment outside of my usual medication. I wasn't convinced it would help but decided to try and give it a go as a last resort anyway. So I went in for my first treatment in September 2007. Had acupuncture, massage and was prescribed a Chinese tea and herb mix to help alleviate my symptoms."


"The funny thing was that I noticed the difference immediately. Up to that point I had been sweating heavily and I sat at the dinner table later that day with my wife and she commented on how unusual it was that I was not sweating at all! My blood pressure lowered that day and continued to drop over the following months to where it is now - normal. Only ten months after starting the treatment I have lost 8 kilos. From the following figures you can see, my blood, sugar level is stable, my cholesterol is below normal, my energy is good and even most of my night sweats had disappeared."


"My blood pressure went from 110/180 in November 2007 to 70/140 (with decrease in Western medication) in August 2008. My sugar levels went from 10.0 (Long term) to 7.5 (Short term) in November 2007, and in August 2008 they went from 8.4 (Long term) to 6.7 (Short term). My Cholesterol was 4.5; HDL=0.7; LDL=2.9 in November 2007, and in August 2008 it was 4.9; HDL=0.9; LDL=3.1."


"I was very happy to be able to go on our annual ski trip to Italy this February, something that seemed so unlikely before coming to AcuMedic, and I enjoy my golf as I used to."


"On my latest visit in June, everything was normal and stable. I have never seen or heard of such results before, it's quite unbelievable. The most amazing thing for me is of course to see how much the blood pressure went down and the energy and strength went up."

Last Updated: December 13, 2012

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