Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Relaxed blood pressure guidelines cut millions from needing medication

Date:
March 29, 2014
Source:
Duke Medicine
Summary:
New guidelines that ease the recommended blood pressure could result in 5.8 million U.S. adults no longer needing hypertension medication, according to an analysis. The findings are the first peer-reviewed analysis to quantify the impact of guidelines' change to relax the blood pressure goal in adults 60 years and older to 150/90, instead of the previous goal of 140/90.

New guidelines that ease the recommended blood pressure could result in 5.8 million U.S. adults no longer needing hypertension medication, according to an analysis by Duke Medicine researchers.

The findings are the first peer-reviewed analysis to quantify the impact of guidelines announced in February by the Eighth Joint National Committee. In a divisive move, the committee relaxed the blood pressure goal in adults 60 years and older to 150/90, instead of the previous goal of 140/90.

Blood pressure goals were also eased for adults with diabetes and kidney disease.

"Raising the target in older adults is controversial, and not all experts agree with this new recommendation," said lead author Ann Marie Navar-Boggan, a cardiology fellow at Duke University School of Medicine. "In this study, we wanted to determine the number of adults affected by these changes."

Researchers at the Duke Clinical Research Institute, in collaboration with McGill University, published their results online March 29, 2014, in the Journal of the American Medical Association, to coincide with the American College of Cardiology meeting in Washington, D.C.

Researchers used 2005-2010 data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The database included more than 16,000 participants with blood pressure measurements.

Based on the study sample, the researchers determined that the proportion of U.S. adults considered eligible for hypertension treatment would decrease from 40.6 percent under the old guidelines to 31.7 percent under the new recommendations.

In addition, 13.5 million adults -- most of them over the age of 60 -- would no longer be classified in a danger zone of poorly controlled blood pressure, and instead would be considered adequately managed. This includes 5.8 million U.S. adults who would no longer need blood pressure pills if the guidelines were rigidly applied.

"The new guidelines do not address whether these adults should still be considered as having hypertension," Navar-Boggan said. "But they would no longer need medication to lower their blood pressure."

According to the study, one in four adults over the age of 60 is currently being treated for high blood pressure and meeting the stricter targets set by previous guidelines.

"These adults would be eligible for less intensive blood pressure medication under the new guidelines, particularly if they were experiencing side effects," Navar-Boggan said. "But many experts fear that increasing blood pressure levels in these adults could be harmful."

"This study reinforces how many Americans with hypertension fall into the treatment 'gray zone' where we don't know how aggressive to treat and where we urgently need to conduct more research" said Eric D. Peterson, M.D., professor of medicine and director of DCRI.

Navar-Boggan said that even under the newer, less stringent guidelines, an estimated 28 million U.S. adults with hypertension still have uncontrolled blood pressure, and over half of them remain untreated.

"Uncontrolled hypertension is a huge missed opportunity for prevention of cardiovascular diseases such as stroke and heart attack," Navar-Boggan said.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Duke Medicine. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Ann Marie Navar-Boggan, Michael J. Pencina, Ken Williams, Allan D. Sniderman, Eric D. Peterson. Proportion of US Adults Potentially Affected by the 2014 Hypertension Guideline. JAMA, 2014; DOI: 10.1001/jama.2014.2531

Cite This Page:

Duke Medicine. "Relaxed blood pressure guidelines cut millions from needing medication." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 29 March 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140329175017.htm>.
Duke Medicine. (2014, March 29). Relaxed blood pressure guidelines cut millions from needing medication. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 31, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140329175017.htm
Duke Medicine. "Relaxed blood pressure guidelines cut millions from needing medication." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140329175017.htm (accessed July 31, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

House Republicans Vote to Sue Obama Over Healthcare Law

House Republicans Vote to Sue Obama Over Healthcare Law

Reuters - US Online Video (July 31, 2014) The Republican-led House of Representatives votes to sue President Obama, accusing him of overstepping his executive authority in making changes to the Affordable Care Act. Mana Rabiee reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Despite Health Questions, E-Cigs Are Beneficial: Study

Despite Health Questions, E-Cigs Are Beneficial: Study

Newsy (July 31, 2014) Citing 81 previous studies, new research out of London suggests the benefits of smoking e-cigarettes instead of regular ones outweighs the risks. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Dangerous Bacteria Kills One in Florida

Dangerous Bacteria Kills One in Florida

AP (July 31, 2014) Sarasota County, Florida health officials have issued a warning against eating raw oysters and exposing open wounds to coastal and inland waters after a dangerous bacteria killed one person and made another sick. (July 31) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Health Insurers' Profits Slide

Health Insurers' Profits Slide

Reuters - Business Video Online (July 30, 2014) Obamacare-related costs were said to be behind the profit plunge at Wellpoint and Humana, but Wellpoint sees the new exchanges boosting its earnings for the full year. Fred Katayama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



    Save/Print:
    Share:

    Free Subscriptions


    Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

    Get Social & Mobile


    Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

    Have Feedback?


    Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
    Mobile: iPhone Android Web
    Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
    Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
    Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins