The blood pressure (BP) threshold for hypertension has changed over time, and currently in the general adult population, the accepted cut-off is at or below 140/90 mmHg upon repeated sphygmomanometric measurements in the doctor's office (in children, the threshold is blood pressure above the 95th percentile for height and gender). When blood pressure exceeds this level, clinic management strategies are triggered to reduce blood pressure, and thus represent a simple and practical diagnostic approach for healthcare providers to initiate and monitor treatment. On the basis of this definition, there are over 1 billion people with high blood pressure worldwide and the World Health Organization suggest this will rise to 1.5 billion by 20201.

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