OverviewHypertension is a disorder characterized by consistently high blood pressure. Generally, high blood pressure consists of systolic blood pressure (the top number, which represents the pressure generated when the heart beats) higher than 140, or diastolic blood pressure (the bottom number, which represents the pressure in the vessels when the heart is at rest) over 90.
Review Date 2/24/2016
Updated by: Michael A. Chen, MD, PhD, Associate Professor of Medicine, Division of Cardiology, Harborview Medical Center, University of Washington Medical School, Seattle, WA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Isla Ogilvie, PhD, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.