Author(s): Giannattasio C, Cairo M, Cesana F, Alloni M, Sormani P,
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Abstract BACKGROUND: Adequate control of blood pressure (BP) is limited worldwide. This has serious consequences for public health because in hypertensive patients, uncontrolled BP is associated with a higher incidence of cardiovascular events, particularly stroke. The aim of this study was to investigate BP control in a cohort of treated patients with diagnosed hypertension, who were under general practitioner care in Italy. METHODS: Data were collected by 2,643 physicians on 8,572 individual Italian patients. Office BP was measured 5 min after seating each patient and then 3-5 min later. For each patient, data such as medical history of patients, physical examination data, antihypertensive drug usage, and self-BP measurement frequency were obtained. RESULTS: Male prevalence was 48.4\%, and mean age was 64.3 ± 10.5 years. Based on the second measurement, BP control (<140/90 mm Hg) was observed in 33.5\% of all patients (34.2\% in men and 33.4\% in women). BP control was much lower for systolic BP than for diastolic BP (35.9 vs. 61.3\%, P < 0.0001); moreover, BP control was much more common in patients who were engaged in self-BP measurement (61.2 vs. 38.8\%, P < 0.0001). A stricter BP control recommended by the guidelines of the European Society of Hypertension (ESH) and European Society of Cardiology (ESC) (<130/80 mm Hg) was observed in only 5.5\% of diabetic patients. CONCLUSIONS: In treated Italian hypertensives effective BP control remains uncommon largely due to the failure to appropriately reduce the systolic BP. The stricter values recommended by the ESH/ESC guidelines for diabetic patients are achieved only by a small fraction of hypertensive diabetic population.
This article was published in Am J Hypertens
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