New blood pressure guidelines for "silent, deadly health crisis"

High blood pressure patient

GETTY Images Salt is one of the main causes of high blood pressure

The American Heart Association released a major update regarding new blood pressure guidelines and under the changes, more Americans are considered to have high blood pressure.

The global hypertension drug market is already expected to climb to $32 billion by the end of 2020, according to analysts at Technavio, but now with the new guidelines for blood pressure set in place by the American Heart Association earlier this week, that market could rise even more as additional Americans may need medication.

Harlan Krumholz, a cardiologist at Yale University, said the new definition will radically change how primary care doctors interact with their patients. Normal is defined as 120/80 or less.

The guidelines recommend lifestyle changes, eating a healthy, low-sodium diet, rich in potassium - bananas, potatoes, avocados, leafy green vegetables - weight loss, exercise, and cutting out alcohol and tobacco.

The AHA says the new guidelines are created to help people address the potentially deadly condition much earlier.

For the first time since 2003, the American Heart Association has redefined high blood pressure.

Under the new guidelines, 14% of more people will be diagnosed with high blood pressure, making almost half of American adults at risk for major health problems.

"There are millions of people that fall into this category that's now called Stage One Hypertension who previously we were calling normal blood pressures", Cardiology Director for the Heart and Vascular Institute at the Hartford Healthcare Corporation at MidState Medical Center Dr. Bill Farrell said.

Now 46 percent of US adults will have high blood pressure.

FOX Business reached out to some of the top pharma companies named above but did not immediately receive a comment on how the new guidelines could potentially impact sales going forward. The report said: "People with those readings now will be categorised as having either elevated (120-129 and less than 80) or stage 1 hypertension (130-139 or 80-89)".

Hypertensive crisis is systolic over 180 and/or diastolic over 120, with patients needing prompt changes in medication if there are no other indications of problems, or immediate hospitalization if there are signs of organ damage.

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