Secondary hypertension (secondary high blood pressure) is high blood pressure that's caused by another medical condition. Secondary hypertension differs from the usual type of high blood pressure (essential hypertension), which is often referred to simply as high blood pressure. Essential hypertension, also known as primary hypertension, has no clear cause and is thought to be linked to genetics, poor diet, lack of exercise and obesity.

Secondary hypertension can be caused by conditions that affect your kidneys, arteries, heart or endocrine system. Secondary hypertension can also occur during pregnancy.

Proper treatment of secondary hypertension can often control both the underlying condition and the high blood pressure, which reduces the risk of serious complications — including heart disease, kidney failure and stroke.

Mar. 15, 2013