Thursday, March 17, 2016

Managing blood pressure - lowering those numbers

Photo from via Flickr
Pay attention, keep track and act when needed - key elements to control high blood pressure, the leading cause of strokes.

Read a recent study illustrating this importance and how intensive blood pressure management is feasible in post-stroke care:
"Active management of systolic blood pressure in this population using a 140 mm Hg target led to a clinically important reduction in blood pressure," they wrote, adding, "Active management of blood pressure after stroke/transient ischaemic attack is more important than the target that is set."
"The additional resources needed to achieve the additional 3 mm Hg lower blood pressure in the intensive target arm might be better spent in increasing the proportion of people with stroke in primary care who have a systolic blood pressure below 140 mm Hg."
Their Prevention After Stroke -- Blood Pressure (PAST-BP) study included 529 patients at 99 general practices in England who were randomized open-label to treatment to an intensive target of under 130 mm Hg (or a 10 mm Hg reduction from baseline if they started below 140 mm Hg) or a standard target of less than 140 mm Hg.
"Apart from the different target, patients in both arms were actively managed in the same way with regular reviews by the primary care team," Mant's group noted."
The reduction of blood pressure readings might have been small, but which level would you rather have?

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