Can I Still Get Heart Disease if I Take Blood Pressure Medication?

  • Medical Author:
    Daniel Lee Kulick, MD, FACC, FSCAI

    Dr. Kulick received his undergraduate and medical degrees from the University of Southern California, School of Medicine. He performed his residency in internal medicine at the Harbor-University of California Los Angeles Medical Center and a fellowship in the section of cardiology at the Los Angeles County-University of Southern California Medical Center. He is board certified in Internal Medicine and Cardiology.

  • Medical Editor: Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD
    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD

    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD

    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.

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Ask the experts

I have high blood pressure and kidney problems, but I manage it carefully with blood pressure medication. I heard I still run a risk for heart disease because my BP is high - is this true? If so how can I prevent this from happening?

Doctor's response

High blood pressure is like high cholesterol and smoking - they are "modifiable" risk factors, meaning that controlling them will help in limiting your risk of developing coronary artery disease (CAD). If high blood pressure is controlled well with medication, diet, and exercise, that decreases the risk of CAD. What's very important however, is how long a person has undiagnosed high blood pressure before it is treated; the more years a person goes with undetected high blood pressure, the greater the risk that coronary and other vascular disease may have developed. This can be easily assessed by a cardiologist using non-invasive diagnostic tests.

Medically reviewed by Robert Bargar, MD; Board Certification in Public Health & General Preventive Medicine


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Reviewed on 8/28/2017

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