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How do you read a chart for high blood pressure?

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Quick Answer

To read a blood pressure chart, find systolic and diastolic numbers of the blood pressure in millimeters of mercury on the chart, and then find the category for the blood pressure reading on the same line. A blood pressure chart shows category classifications of blood pressure, such as normal, pre-hypertension, and stage 1 and stage 2 hypertension, based on readings. A blood pressure chart is useful in determining if your blood pressure is normal, notes Mayo Clinic.

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Full Answer

Normal blood pressure is 120 or below systolic and 80 or below diastolic, reports Mayo Clinic. A top or systolic reading of 120 to 139 millimeters of mercury or a diastolic reading of 80 to 89 indicates pre-hypertension. A systolic reading of 140 to 159 or diastolic reading of 90 to 99 indicates stage 1 hypertension, while stage 2 hypertension features a systolic reading of 160 or higher or a diastolic reading of 100 or higher.

Treatment goals for people who are younger than 60 or people with diabetes, coronary artery disease or chronic kidney disease is 140/90 millimeters of mercury. For adults over age 60, the goal is 150/90 millimeters of mercury, notes Mayo Clinic. The chart provided by Mayo Clinic lists suggestions for each type of blood pressure for treatment, such as maintaining a healthy lifestyle and taking medications.

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