Outcomes. Extensive data from many randomised controlled trials have shown the benefit of treating hypertension. The target blood pressure (BP) for antihypertensive management should be systolic BP < 140 mmHg, diastolic < 90 mmHg, with minimal or no drug side-effects. However, a lesser reduction will elicit benefit although this is not optimal. The reduction of BP in the elderly and in those with severe hypertension should be achieved gradually over 6 months. Stricter BP control is required for patients with end organ damage, co-existing risk factors and co-morbidity, e.g. diabetes mellitus. Co-existent risk factors should also be controlled. Benefits. Reduction in risk of stroke, cardiac failure, renal insufficiency and probably coronary artery disease. The major precautions and contraindicationns to each antihypertensive drug recommended are listed. Recommendations. Correct BP measurement procedure is described. Evaluation of cardiovascular risk factors and recommendations for antihypertensive therapy are stipulated. The total cardiovascular diseasr risk profile should be determined for all patients and this should inform management strategies. Lifestyle modification and patient edcuation plays an essential role in the management strategy. Drug therapy. First line - low dose thiazide-like diuretics; second line - add one of the following: reserpine, or β-blockers or ACE inhibitors or calcium channel blockers; third line - add another second line drug or hydralazine or α-blocker. The guideline includes management of specific situations, i.e. hypertensive emergency and urgency, severe hypertension with target organ damage and refractory hypertension (BP>160/95 mmHg on triple therapy), hypertension in diabetes mellitus, etc. Validity. Developed by the Working Groups established by the Executive Committee of the Southern African Hypertension Society with broader consensus meeting endorsement. The 2001 version was endorsed by the South African Medical Association Guideline Committee. The 2003 revisions were endorsed by the Executive Committee and a wider Working Group.
|Number of pages||16|
|Journal||South African Medical Journal|
|Issue number||3 II|
|Publication status||Published - Mar 2004|