To provide updated, evidence-based recommendations for the management of hypertension in adults.
For lifestyle and pharmacological interventions, evidence from randomized, controlled trials and systematic reviews of trials was preferentially reviewed. Changes in cardiovascular morbidity and mortality were the primary outcomes of interest. For lifestyle interventions, blood pressure (BP) lowering was accepted as a primary outcome given the lack of long-term morbidity/mortality data in this field. For treatment of patients with kidney disease, the development of proteinuria or worsening of kidney function was also accepted as a clinically relevant primary outcome.
MEDLINE searches were conducted from November 2004 to October 2005 to update the 2005 recommendations. In addition, reference lists were scanned and experts were contacted to identify additional published studies. All relevant articles were reviewed and appraised independently by content and methodological experts using prespecified levels of evidence.
Lifestyle modifications to prevent and/or treat hypertension include the following: perform 30 min to 60 min of aerobic exercise four to seven days per week; maintain a healthy body weight (body mass index of 18.5 kg/m2 to 24.9 kg/m2) and waist circumference (less than 102 cm for men and less than 88 cm for women); limit alcohol consumption to no more than 14 standard drinks per week in men or nine standard drinks per week in women; follow a diet that is reduced in saturated fat and cholesterol and that emphasizes fruits, vegetables and low-fat dairy products; restrict salt intake; and consider stress management in selected individuals. Treatment thresholds and targets should take into account each individual's global atherosclerotic risk, target organ damage and comorbid conditions. BP should be lowered to less than 140/90 mmHg in all patients, and to less than 130/80 mmHg in those with diabetes mellitus or chronic kidney disease (regardless of the degree of proteinuria). Most adults with hypertension require more than one agent to achieve these target BPs. For adults without compelling indications for other agents, initial therapy should include thiazide diuretics. Other agents appropriate for first-line therapy for diastolic hypertension with or without systolic hypertension include beta-blockers (in those younger than 60 years), angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors (in nonblack patients), long-acting calcium channel blockers or angiotensin receptor antagonists. Other agents for first-line therapy for isolated systolic hypertension include long-acting dihydropyridine calcium channel blockers or angiotensin receptor antagonists. Certain comorbid conditions provide compelling indications for first-line use of other agents: in patients with angina, recent myocardial infarction or heart failure, beta-blockers and ACE inhibitors are recommended as first-line therapy; in patients with diabetes mellitus, ACE inhibitors or angiotensin receptor antagonists (or in patients without albuminuria, thiazides or dihydropyridine calcium channel blockers) are appropriate first-line therapies; and in patients with nondiabetic chronic kidney disease, ACE inhibitors are recommended. All hypertensive patients should have their fasting lipids screened, and those with dyslipidemia should be treated using the thresholds, targets and agents recommended by the Canadian Hypertension Education Program Working Group on the management of dyslipidemia and the prevention of cardiovascular disease. Selected patients with hypertension, but without dyslipidemia, should also receive statin therapy and/or acetylsalicylic acid therapy.
All recommendations were graded according to strength of the evidence and voted on by the 45 members of the Canadian Hypertension Education Program Evidence-Based Recommendations Task Force. All recommendations reported here achieved at least 95% consensus. These guidelines will continue to be updated annually.
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An analysis of annual reports of the station of ambulance and emergency medical aid during the past 6 years demonstrated a significant increase in the number of patients with acute cerebral circulation disorders due to reorganization of ambulance medical aid services. The authors discuss some scientific-methodological organizational problems of neurological emergency medical services, the tasks of specialized neurological teams questions of the diagnosis of brain stroke and the necessary level of eupplementary studies and treatment measures in the prehospital stage. A certain importance is allocated to a continuity of patient treatment in the hospital and perfection of the system of hospital care to patients with acute disorders of cerebral circulation.
Subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH) has a different epidemiological profile from other types of stroke and a different etiology. Although there has been a general decline in overall stroke incidence since the 1950s, secular trends for SAH have been modest. In contrast to other stroke types, changes in incidence over the last few decades have been less clear. The purpose of this study was to estimate hospitalization and case-fatality rates of SAH according to age, sex, calendar year, and season.
Data were obtained for each of Canada's 10 provinces for the 10 fiscal years 1982 through 1991. All hospitalizations of persons 15 years of age or older with a primary diagnosis at discharge coded 430 according to the International Classification of Diseases, 9th Revision, were included. Rates of SAH per 100,000 population were calculated for men and women for 5-year age groups, by calendar year, and by season. Annual age- and sex-specific (hospital) case-fatality rates up to 30 days were also calculated. Additionally, hospital deaths from this study were related to national SAH mortality statistics.
A total of 14145 women and 8995 men were discharged with a primary diagnosis of SAH during the 10-year period. In contrast to other types of stroke, the rates of SAH were higher for women than for men at all ages. The age-standardized rates of SAH in 1991-1992 were 11.2 per 100000 women and 8.0 per 100000 men. For women, there was a 6% (95% confidence interval [CI], -12% to 0%) decline in hospitalization rates over that period; for men, the decline was 15% (95% CI, -21% to -8%). The peak season for SAH among women was winter; for men the peaks were in the fall and spring. For both sexes, the lowest occurrence was in the summer. Over this period, 30-day case-fatality rates declined somewhat (statistically significant only in the age group of 35 to 44 years). The number of deaths enumerated from hospital discharges was 20% to 50% lower than the number recorded on national mortality statistics, indicating that a proportion of SAH deaths occurred before (or after) the hospital stay.
Although rates of hospitalization for SAH declined over this period, SAH remains an important neurological event affecting individuals at relatively young ages. The rates were higher for women than for men at all ages. Total (in-hospital) case-fatality rate remains high.