High blood pressure can also lead to problems in other organs and systems of the body.
Kidneys are particularly susceptible and can eventually become unhealthy. This means that they become unable to remove dangerous waste out of the blood and into the urine. A person with diabetes then not only has difficulties with glucose levels in their blood but also difficulties with the levels of other chemicals in their blood that are dangerous.
There are a few reasons why the brain is vulnerable to stroke when a person has high blood pressure. One is that the arteries and smaller blood vessels in the brain are more brittle and can thus break open – the blood then spills out into the brain (brain haemorrhage) and parts of the brain die – that is, a stroke occurs.
The second way that a stroke can occur is through clots. These clots can break off or form in any part of the body and then travel in the blood stream into the brain where they will become stuck in a small blood vessel. This means that the part of the brain supplied by the blocked blood vessel dies – that is, a stroke occurs.
Rizwana Kousar 2010. What is Diabetes? Community Education Series, Melbourne. © Australian Community Centre for Diabetes (ACCD).