Recent research has shown that 75 years and older hypertensive patients can be treated to have a lower blood pressure of 120 mm Hg that will reduce the mortality risk by one-third.
According to Mark Supiano, a researcher from the School of Medicine at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City, this is a fantastic breakthrough.
Plus, the low blood pressure target does not increase the risk of any side effects, falls included. Dr. Supiano and one of his colleagues, first author Jeff Williamson, MD, from the Wake Forest School of Medicine in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, presented the results of the study at the American Geriatrics Society 2016 Scientific Meeting.
It was proved throughout previous trials that most of the people that suffer from hypertension can definitively live longer if their condition is controlled. However, a target blood pressure has not been 100 percent established yet.
The Eight Joint National Committee has recently recommended a systolic blood pressure target below 150 mm Hg for 60 years old patients or older, even if a minority of committee members suggested a target of 140 mm Hg.
According to Dr. Williamson, the studies’ results regarding the aggressive lowering of blood pressure in older people have been contradictory. In other words, a part of the observational studies showed that blood pressure medications increase the risk for falls, but some other small randomized and controlled trials showed the opposite.
Dr. Supiano explained that one stage of the research was to see what is the lowest and still the safest blood pressure. Precisely 2636 SPRINT participants who were at least 75 years old, attended the study, and all turned out to be vulnerable to cardiovascular disease. The reason why the researchers chose these participants was that they were regarded to be at high risk for side effects from antihypertensive medication.
A number of 1319 randomly assigned people to a standard treatment had a 140 mm Hg target or less while the 1317 people assigned to intensive treatment had a systolic blood pressure target of 120 mm Hg or less.
After 3.14 years, mean pressure achieved with intensive treatment was 123.4, compared with the 134.8 mm Hg achieved with standard treatment.
Plus, mortality rates were substantially lower with intensive treatment than with standard treatment and also the rates of cardiovascular disease, described as a composite of nonfatal myocardial infarction, an acute coronary syndrome not resulting in myocardial infarction, nonfatal acute decompensated heart failure, nonfatal stroke, and death from all cardiovascular causes.
It means that a lower blood pressure is a safer way to deal with heart diseases.
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