Indexed on: 19 Apr '05Published on: 19 Apr '05Published in: Der Internist
Treatment of high blood pressure is a central element in prevention of cardiovascular diseases. The new classification of hypertension takes into consideration the close association between blood pressure level and cardiovascular risk and designates blood pressure between 140/90 and 130/80 mmHg as high-normal so that blood pressure <140/90 mmHg should always be the goal. The targeted blood pressure levels are also defined by the extent of end-organ damage already present. The therapeutic objective in patients with diabetes mellitus is a blood pressure level of 130/80 mmHg and in patients with kidney disease and proteinuria 125/75 mmHg. The five substance groups of diuretics, beta-blockers, calcium antagonists, ACE inhibitors, and angiotensin receptor blockers are recommended for primary treatment. In addition to the antihypertensive properties, substance-specific effects of ACE inhibitors and angiotensin receptor blockers have been described. Primarily, instead of monotherapy low-dose combination therapy can also be judicious.