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  1. #1
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    Default (a) high blood pressure

    Hello,
    How would you complete these sentences with A-AN-THE or nothing?
    'I have .....high blood pressure and ...... constant headache.'
    'The top lifts up to form ......screen.'

  2. #2
    Ann1977 is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: (a) high blood pressure

    'I have .....high blood pressure and ...... constant headache.'
    I have high blood pressure and a constant headache.

    'The top lifts up to form ......screen.'
    The top lifts up to form a screen.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: (a) high blood pressure

    Thank you Ann,
    Would it be totally wrong to say 'a high blood pressure' and 'the screen'?

  4. #4
    Ann1977 is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: (a) high blood pressure

    Quote Originally Posted by light View Post
    Thank you Ann,
    Would it be totally wrong to say 'a high blood pressure' and 'the screen'?
    "A high blood pressure" would not make any grammatical sense in this sentence.

    The blood of every living person exerts pressure against the walls of the veins and arteries. This is called the "blood pressure." In some people, this blood pressure is high, so they have "high blood pressure." In other cases, the blood pressure is normal, so they have "normal blood pressure."

    "High blood pressure" is a condition, not an object or event. It is like "poor eyesight" or "shortness of breath."
    --------------------------------------------

    You would use "the" for screen if it has already been established what screen we are talking about. But if this is the first time anyone has heard anything about screens, then use "a."


    "The new library desks offer a new feature -- a noise-abatement screen! The top lifts up to form the screen, so students are not distracted by ambient noise."

    but

    "It's so noisy in here. I wish I had a desk whose top lifts up to form a screen of some kind."

  5. #5
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    Default Re: (a) high blood pressure

    thank you for the explanation, very useful for me.
    still, isn't 'headache' a condition, too?

  6. #6
    Ann1977 is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: (a) high blood pressure

    Quote Originally Posted by light View Post
    thank you for the explanation, very useful for me.
    still, isn't 'headache' a condition, too?
    It is construed grammatically as "an event" -- or even an intangible "object" -- rather than a condition.
    As an "intangible object," it would be grammatically the same as "a guilty conscience" or "a worried mind."

    It might be possible to envision "headaches" as a chronic condition, and in that case, maybe the writer would drop the use of "a."

    "Some patients have a non-specific cluster of complaints: malaise, headache, night sweats, lassitude."

    A sentence like that suggests that headaches are a chronic condition in a way that "I have a headache" does not suggest.
    Last edited by Ann1977; 20-Oct-2009 at 20:03.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: (a) high blood pressure

    thanks a lot for your detailed explanations.
    and you are right, headaches, especially mine, are definitely objects drilling my brain:)
    bye

  8. #8
    Ann1977 is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: (a) high blood pressure

    Quote Originally Posted by light View Post
    thanks a lot for your detailed explanations.
    and you are right, headaches, especially mine, are definitely objects drilling my brain:)
    bye
    LOL! Well, I hope you have an instant recovery the second you finish this work!

    Best wishes in your studies!

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