Redefining Hypertension: A Redefinition Throwback to Polio

Redefining Hypertension: A Redefinition Throwback to Polio

taking a person's blood pressure
The difference between the redefining of polio in 1954 and the redefining of hypertension in 2017 is that the former decreased the number of people with a disease while the latter increased the number of people with a condition.

On Nov. 13, 2017, the American College of Cardiology (ACC) and the American Heart Association (AHA) changed their guidelines for defining hypertension. They lowered the range for defining high blood pressure. Under the old guideline, a person was determined to have high blood pressure if their systolic blood pressure measures 140 mmHg (millimeters of mercury) or more and their diastolic blood pressure measures 90 mmHg or more. Under the new guideline, a person is considered to have high blood pressure if their systolic blood pressure is 130 mmHg or more and their diastolic blood pressure is 80 mmHg or more.1 2 

The systolic blood pressure number measures the pressure in the blood vessels when the heart beats. The diastolic blood pressure number measures the pressure in the blood vessels when the heart rests between beats.3

According to a news article published by the ACC, “The new definition will result in nearly half of the U.S. adult population (46 percent) having high blood pressure, with the greatest impact expected among younger people. Additionally, the prevalence of high blood pressure is expected to triple among men under age 45, and double among women under 45.”1 

Now, let that fact sink in for a minute. Merely by changing the definition of what constitutes high blood pressure, two medical associations succeeded in giving tens of millions of Americans a serious medical condition almost overnight. Prior to Nov. 13, 2017, about 75 million (29 percent) adults in the United States had high blood pressure. As of Nov. 13, the number of American adults suffering from high blood pressure dramatically jumped from one in three to nearly one in two—creating a much larger “at risk” population of more than 100 million adults in the U.S.3 

Suddenly, a lot more Americans who did not require medication to help lower their blood pressure before will now be prescribed blood pressure medication by their doctors. What has changed in terms of their health? Absolutely nothing. All that happened was that two medical trade associations got together and decided to change the definition of an adverse health condition.

While, on paper, it may look like many more American adults started to develop hypertension after 2017, the reality is different. What has changed is not the heart health of Americans but rather what two medical trade associations have decided to define as the heart health of Americans.

This sort of administrative tinkering is reminiscent of what occurred in 1954 when the U.S. government decided to redefine polio. Prior to 1954, to be classified as having paralytic poliomyelitis a patient had to show symptoms of paralysis for only 24 hours. In 1954, public health officials tightened the time guideline so that in order to be classified as having paralytic poliomyelitis a patient had to exhibit paralytic symptoms for at least 60 days. Almost overnight, thousands of Americans who would have previously been diagnosed as having polio were no longer considered to have polio.4 5 6 7

Predictably, in 1955 the number of polio cases in the U.S. dropped dramatically. In 1952, a total of 52,879 people got polio in the U.S. In 1953, 35,592 Americans contracted polio. In 1954, the number was 38,476. In 1955, it was 28,985. These sharp declines happened to coincide with the introduction of the inactivated injectable polio vaccine (IPV) by medical researcher and virologist Jonas Salk, MD in 1954.4 5 6 7

It has long been assumed by most people that the Salk vaccine was responsible for the decline in polio cases during the mid-1950s. In fact, the downward trend commenced several years before the vaccine was introduced and one of the most significant declines in cases occurred in 1955, the year after the disease was curiously redefined.

The difference between the redefining of polio in 1954 and the redefining of hypertension in 2017 is that the former decreased the number of people with a disease while the latter increased the number of people with a condition. What do the redefinitions have in common? The administrative move by public health officials in 1954 was used to help justify ramping up the number of vaccines administered to children and adults. Similarly, the administrative move last year will be used to justify ramping up the number of blood pressure medications prescribed to children and adults.

In the future, a lower number of deaths of Americans due to hypertension relative to the number of Americans diagnosed with that condition may be cited as evidence that the medications administered for high blood pressure worked and, thus, should be prescribed more widely. But the reality may be that the apparent relative declines in the number of deaths due to hypertension will simply have been due to the arbitrary sudden increase in the number of people with high blood pressure due to the redefinition of the condition.

This playing fast and loose with the facts is how history sometimes can get manipulated and distorted so that the truth of what happened gets obscured and lost. Science is not immune to this process.

Imagine how differently the history of vaccination may have evolved over the past half century had the illusion, which government health officials proceeded to create with regard to polio in 1954, been widely known and understood back then.


References:

1 New ACC/AHA High Blood Pressure Guidelines Lower Definition of Hypertension. American College of Cardiology Nov. 13, 2017.
2 Millimeter of mercury. Wikipedia.
3 U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. High Blood Pressure. CDC.gov
4 Cáceres M. Polio Wasn’t Vanquished, It Was Redefined. The Vaccine Reaction July 9, 2015.
5 Cáceres M. The Salk ‘Miracle’ Myth. The Vaccine Reaction June 2, 2015.
6 Cáceres M. The Salk Polio Vaccine “Tragedy”The Vaccine Reaction Jan. 11, 2016.
7 Cáceres M. The Story of Measles’ Sharp Decline. The Vaccine Reaction Apr. 12, 2016.

12 Responses to "Redefining Hypertension: A Redefinition Throwback to Polio"

  1. Nostalgic   March 26, 2018 at 12:12 am

    If anyone wants to force your child to get one of these deadly injections, make them sign a legal paper making them responsible for any adverse side effector what many say is the actual effect. They wont sign it and will make you go away and your child will be safe from their toxic injections. Vaccines were designed to kill germs. Germs do not cause disease. Polio is a disease of body poisoning and nutritional deficiency, not a virus disease. It is a man made disease and is kept going by the poison vaccine shots, wrong diets, and other body-poisons. Salk and Sabans polio vaccines caused paralysisthey didnt prevent polio at allthe same with smallpox. Now they are working on a cancer vaccine? Wake up people, were being culled.

    Reply
  2. Elijah Varga   March 27, 2018 at 11:25 pm

    So,so amazing how cleverly we are fooled.Tell them a bit of something give it a twist make sure they don’t know the rest of the issue in question and voila.You deceived all the fool gullible non thinkers.Indoctrination is such an effective tool to apply, as more and more of the crowd is just unable and unwilling to think, to reason, to put all things on a measure.I guess fair enough for us ordinary folks, but when a medical professionals are just as easily swept away, nothing more to say, than “Well, They got us on a ride all right”.

    Reply
  3. Doubting Thomas   March 28, 2018 at 3:01 am

    This is nothing more than a favor for Big Pharma. Look how much more money they are going to make off of this change. This is criminal. All of them are LIARS! I’m waiting for the day when they talk Congress into making it mandatory for ALL US CITIZENS to have to take all the shots. That will be a good way for them to get rid of a large portion of the population.

    Reply
  4. Carol Taylor   March 28, 2018 at 5:52 am

    Back in the 70s, Our Doctor told my family they were taught that Blood Pressure naturally goes up with Age
    as a Protection
    He said, “It should be a 100 plus your Age”…Doctors were taught. Good diet and Good Fats and life Style.
    That was until, Big Pharma got a hold of the Medical Doctors and also had a Drug to make money with, Did things start to change with the Numbers!

    Reply
  5. Timothy Howes   March 28, 2018 at 6:15 am

    This is another huge farce to increase the big pharma profits. All the so called Doctors will step right in line to start prescribing blood pressure medication to millions of uninformed citizens who believe this propaganda and do not bother to research why their blood pressure is slightly elevated and lower it naturally with diet, exercise and breathing exercises? Very sad state of affairs going on in the USA? Just like the low fat high carbohydrate diet supported by the AHA?

    Reply
  6. RIck   March 28, 2018 at 7:12 am

    You right all about $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$
    What Funny My parent in South America Columbia told me when my mom came to the states she had need issue and wanted to replace her knee. She want back and talk to a Dr in Colombia and the told her to Go to GNC take Joint Supplement and you be find in 6 weeks Did you know she was fine and need no Knee replacement!! THAT JUST CRAZY!!!!

    Reply
  7. Logan   March 28, 2018 at 8:55 am

    High blood pressure pills for everyone!

    Reply
  8. Jo   March 28, 2018 at 9:42 am

    Dear Choir, nobody else is reading THIS.
    The mainstream pro-commie media “news” fakers back only the Left and status quo, as they work their way towards working in Hollowood.
    Their endless brainwashing worked. Most of America has lost the ability to think critically, functionally and/or bother to research to learn the truth and at on that.

    While the silent majority reared its lumpy old head for The T-Rump’s election, and the arrogant Democrats forgot to flip the Electronic Voting Machine switch, e.g., in swing States’ that silent majority then again went mostly silent–if appalled at the increase in biased “news” and how top crooked Clinton/ OafabaMarx/ Bush -appointees plotted against these united States.
    THOSE PAID OFF BY BIG PHARMA AREN’T FIXING ANYTHING. That’s what fascism is about, corporations or other special interests controlling apparent government.
    WHY CAN’T WE HAVE RIOTS/MARCHES AGAINST THE HOSPITALS??? As if major “news” covers conservatives. I guess nearly all the drug-making factories are in Puerto Rico–but certainly they’re not handy to march in front of. But they ARE having another big laugh; & the bankers are their pals. Only the rich can play.

    Reply
  9. Rickey Hurst, DC   March 28, 2018 at 10:14 am

    They did the same thing when they redefined the “normal” for cholesterol around the year 2000. They sold an extra $80 million of Lipitor.

    Reply
    • Mike Bollinger   March 28, 2018 at 4:33 pm

      I was told my cholesterol numbers were high in 2002, the doctor told me I need a statin. I asked him what can I do naturally to lower my numbers. He said, red yeast rice, fish oil or the equivalent, and niacin. My BP is consistently 130/80 and I am 64 years old. No BP meds for me either, exercise and walking keeps me happier and healthier than any drugs.

      Reply
  10. Vijay Gupta   March 28, 2018 at 12:43 pm

    As the saying goes: There are lies, damned lies, and statistics.

    Reply
  11. Big pHarma Doubter   May 1, 2018 at 10:59 pm

    The technical, industry term for this practice is “indication expansion”. This is the driver of the lowering of the cholesterol numbers. Once you have saturated a patient population the only way to increase sales is to change the prescribing criteria.
    If you go to Fierce Pharma, you can search for the impact that the approval or denial of a petitioned “indication expansion” will have n a companies sales and value.

    Reply

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