Fourth paragraph in:

    But the report's authors predicted relatively few of those who fall into the new hypertensive category will need medication. Rather, they hope that many found with the early stages of the condition will be able to address it through lifestyle changes such as losing weight, improving their diet, getting more exercise, consuming less alcohol and sodium and lowering stress.

Further down:

    The guidelines suggest that doctors recommend lifestyle changes for people found to have elevated blood pressure. Those with Stage 1 hypertension should be assessed for their 10-year risk of heart disease or stroke under the parameters of a widely used matrix for cardiovascular health. Those with more than a 10 percent chance, or other complicating factors, should try medication.

    “An important cornerstone of these new guidelines is a strong emphasis on lifestyle changes as the first line of therapy. There is an opportunity to reduce risk without necessarily imposing medications,” said Richard Chazal, the immediate past president of the American College of Cardiology.

A revision of hypertension guidelines with an eye towards encouraging better early lifestyle intervention seems like a pretty solid idea to me. I'm not seeing the drive towards greater prescription of antihypertensives that you are here. Frankly, with the amount of deaths from cardiovascular problems in this country (not to mention the preventable load on the healthcare system they create), giving cardiologists and general practitioners more leeway to tackle hypertension sounds like a great idea.

posted by kleinbl00: 249 days ago