Blood Pressure-lowering is Even More Beneficial Than Previously Thought, Says Study

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he added.

There has been controversy about whether pharmacological blood pressure lowering is equally beneficial in people with versus without a prior heart attack or stroke, and when blood pressure is below the threshold for hypertension (typically 140/90 mmHg). Evidence from previous studies has been inconclusive, leading to contradictory treatment recommendations around the world.

This was the largest – and most detailed – study ever conducted to examine these questions. The researchers combined data on individuals who had participated in a randomised clinical trial and conducted a meta-analysis. The study included 348,854 participants from 48 trials.

Participants were divided into two groups: those with a prior diagnosis of cardiovascular disease and those without. Each group was divided into seven subgroups based on systolic blood pressure at study entry (less than 120, 120-129, 130-139, 140-149, 150-159, 160-169, 170 and above mmHg).

Over an average four years of follow-up, each 5 mmHg reduction in systolic blood pressure lowered the relative risk of major cardiovascular events by about 10%. The risks for stroke, ischaemic heart disease, heart failure and death from cardiovascular disease were reduced by 13%, 7% and 14% and 5%, respectively.

Neither the presence of cardiovascular disease nor the level of blood pressure at study entry modified the effect of treatment.

Professor Rahimi said: “The decision to prescribe blood pressure medication should not be based simply on a prior diagnosis of cardiovascular disease or an individual’s current blood pressure.”





Source: Eurekalert



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