Hypertension Guidelines Reappraised in Light of New Research

A Task Force of the European Society of Hypertension have released the official European guidelines on the management and treatment of hypertension. The guidelines are an update of those published in 2007, and will be published in the November issue of the Journal of Hypertension. The journal is published by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, a part of Wolters Kluwer Health, a leading provider of information and business intelligence for students, professionals, and institutions in medicine, nursing, allied health, and pharmacy.

In the two years since the publication of the 2007 guidelines for the management of arterial hypertension of the European Society of Hypertension (ESH) and the European Society of Cardiology (ESC), research on hypertension has actively been pursued and the results of new important studies (including several large randomized trials of antihypertensive therapy) have been published. The aim of the Task Force was to address these results in order to assess their contribution to our expanding knowledge of hypertension.

While some of the studies have reinforced the evidence on which the recommendations of the 2007 ESH/ESC guidelines were based, others have widened the information available in 2007, modifying some of the previous concepts, and suggesting that new evidence-based recommendations could be appropriate.

The guidelines draw new conclusions on how to assess hypertension-related organ damage, when to initiate antihypertensive therapy, what the blood pressure target should be in the elderly, the diabetic and the high risk patient, how to choose among available antihypertensive agents and how to combine them.

In addition, the Task Force has made suggestions for further research and trials that need to be carried out, stressing the importance of evidence as a basis on which decisions on hypertension management should be made. The results of further research, they state, might be a useful step toward the preparation of a third version of the guidelines in the future.

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Source:  Wolters Kluwer Health: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins

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