Nearly a third of French adults have high blood pressure, but more than 6 million sufferers are undiagnosed. However, chronic disease is one of the main causes of complications from infarction or stroke.
It is a worrying figure that Public Health France delivers this Wednesday, May 16: while 17 million French people, roughly one in three adults, have high blood pressure, more than 6 million of them do not know. sick. The health agency draws this observation from two surveys carried out in the general population. A greater lack of knowledge compared to our European neighbors and which would be due to very insufficient screening. However, hypertension, in addition to being the most common chronic disease in France, can be diagnosed early and easily thanks to regular blood pressure measurement. Taking your blood pressure once a year can be enough according to Public Health France.
While the rate of screening for high blood pressure has been low for several years, the Covid-19 epidemic has further put a brake on the detection of the disease. In addition to screening, the number of patients starting antihypertensive treatment is limited: 1.6 million start treatment each year. Public Health France therefore calls for "health policies in favor of the primary prevention of arterial hypertension, its screening, and its management".
This lack of diagnosis in people with hypertension is a problem that has dragged on for many years according to Public Health France, since screening indicators have not improved since 2006. What if high blood pressure is not known , it cannot be treated. Only one out of two hypertensives is treated pharmacologically and this management is less in women.
However, high blood pressure was the first risk factor for mortality in 2019 and it remains today one of the “main causes of cardiovascular (myocardial infarction, stroke), renal (kidney failure) or cognitive (dementia… ), due to the frequent absence of symptoms", warns the French agency. Complications that can also be avoided by "hygieno-dietary rules" that help to control blood pressure, in addition to pharmacological treatments. What "extend the life expectancy, but also the quality of life of hypertensive patients".