High Blood Pressure Symptoms and Signs: Causes

Doctor’s Notes on High Blood Pressure Signs, Symptoms, Causes, Diet, and Medications

High blood pressure is medically known as hypertension. In high blood pressure, the pressure within the arteries (vessels that carry blood away from the heart) is abnormally elevated. Causes of high blood pressure include familial (inherited) factors and increased stiffness of the arteries. High blood pressure causes a number of health complications including heart disease, stroke, and kidney disease.

High blood pressure typically does not cause specific symptoms or signs. When symptoms do occur or in cases with marked elevation of blood pressure, associated symptoms can include dizziness, blurred vision, shortness of breath, nausea, headache, and a feeling of pulsations in the head or neck. Chest pain, abdominal pain, and back pain can be symptoms of complications of severe hypertension.


Kasper, D.L., et al., eds. Harrison’s Principles of Internal Medicine, 19th Ed. United States: McGraw-Hill Education, 2015.