The Dangers of Hypertension

If you’ve been diagnosed with or suspect you might have hypertension in Des Moines, IA, the experts at Iowa Kidney Physicians can help develop a treatment plan that works for you.

Effects of Hypertension

High blood pressure, otherwise known as hypertension, is a common condition. It’s known as a silent killer, as it often causes damage that goes unaddressed and unnoticed until it's too late. Some of the most significant damage caused by hypertension in Des Moines, IA include those listed below.

Artery and Heart Problems

One of the biggest effects of high blood pressure is the damage it does to the artery walls. Over time, plaque attaches to and hardens on the walls, reducing the space blood has to flow.

When blood cannot flow properly to the brain or heart, it can cause blood clots, stroke, or heart attack. It can also lead to complete heart failure, as narrowed arteries force the heart to work harder. The harder it works, the larger it gets.


Angina is a type of chest pain that occurs during activity, even light activities such as walking up the stairs. This pain is due to the heart not getting enough blood to support such activities.

Kidney Trouble

High blood pressure leads to restricted artery walls throughout the body, including the kidneys. Kidneys are responsible for many important bodily functions, including ridding the body of toxins. When blood is not flowing to the kidneys properly, they cannot carry out their function and are in danger of failing.

Vision Problems 

Eye function relies on the tiny blood vessels surrounding them. When the blood cannot flow properly, these vessels can be damaged and the optic nerve can swell, leading to vision loss.

Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm

The aorta is the vessel that carries the blood from the heart to the chest and stomach. High blood pressure can cause this vessel to swell and, eventually, burst. This is known as AAA or abdominal aortic aneurysm and can be life-threatening.

Treatment of High Blood Pressure

High blood pressure can typically be managed and treated through a combination of diet and lifestyle changes. At times, medication may be needed, too. The specialists at Iowa Kidney Professionals can help develop a personalized treatment plan according to your lifestyle and your needs.

Let the experts at Iowa Kidney Physicians in Des Moines, IA help treat your hypertension effectively and live a healthier life. Make an appointment at the Methodist Plaza office at (515) 336-6557 or the Riverpoint office at (515) 243-3161.