We updated the evidence-based recommendations for the diagnosis, assessment, prevention, and treatment of hypertension in adults for 2011. The major guideline changes this year are: (1) a recommendation was made for using comparative risk analogies when communicating a patient's cardiovascular risk; (2) diagnostic testing issues for renal artery stenosis were discussed; (3) recommendations were added for the management of hypertension during the acute phase of stroke; (4) people with hypertension and diabetes are now considered high risk for cardiovascular events if they have elevated urinary albumin excretion, overt kidney disease, cardiovascular disease, or the presence of other cardiovascular risk factors; (5) the combination of an angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitor and a dihydropyridine calcium channel blocker (CCB) is preferred over the combination of an ACE inhibitor and a thiazide diuretic in persons with diabetes and hypertension; and (6) a recommendation was made to coordinate with pharmacists to improve antihypertensive medication adherence. We also discussed the recent analyses that examined the association between angiotensin II receptor blockers (ARBs) and cancer.
We updated the evidence-based recommendations for the diagnosis, assessment, prevention, and treatment of hypertension in adults for 2012. The new recommendations are: (1) use of home blood pressure monitoring to confirm a diagnosis of white coat syndrome; (2) mineralocorticoid receptor antagonists may be used in selected patients with hypertension and systolic heart failure; (3) a history of atrial fibrillation in patients with hypertension should not be a factor in deciding to prescribe an angiotensin-receptor blocker for the treatment of hypertension; and (4) the blood pressure target for patients with nondiabetic chronic kidney disease has now been changed to
We updated the evidence-based recommendations for the diagnosis, assessment, prevention, and treatment of hypertension in adults for 2013. This year's update includes 2 new recommendations. First, among nonhypertensive or stage 1 hypertensive individuals, the use of resistance or weight training exercise does not adversely influence blood pressure (BP) (Grade D). Thus, such patients need not avoid this type of exercise for fear of increasing BP. Second, and separately, for very elderly patients with isolated systolic hypertension (age 80 years or older), the target for systolic BP should be
Accessible support programs can improve health outcomes for family caregivers of older relatives with a chronic condition. Over the course of 6 months, 27 experienced family caregivers provided weekly support via the telephone to 66 individuals, either new family caregivers of seniors recently diagnosed with stroke or newly vulnerable family caregivers (i.e., facing increasing demands from the deterioration of their senior relative's condition) of seniors with Alzheimer's disease. Qualitative data documented the perceived impact of the intervention, including increased satisfaction with support, coping skills, caregiving competence and confidence, and decreased caregiver burden and loneliness. Caregivers identified varied support processes that overcame support deficits in their social networks. These processes can facilitate replication in future research and inform practice, programs, and policies.
In Canada, cultural, physical and structural barriers to the poor's accessibility to health care persist. The economically disadvantaged are clearly identified as a national high-risk target group because of poorer health status and health behaviours than higher-income Canadians. A four-component model is proposed to describe the complex, multivariate nature of access to health care for the economically disadvantaged. The mutual effects of characteristics of access and poverty are outlined and strategies to facilitate improved access are delineated and exemplified. Education, comprehensive and personalized care, consumer participation, and environmental strategies, while not uniquely applicable to the needs of the poor, may collectively constitute a reasonable approach to removing barriers to access to care for this vulnerable group. Furthermore, these four strategies are consistent with premises of primary health care and health promotion. While the model encompasses many relevant variables, it is neither exclusive nor all-inclusive. Further research is required to assess the linkage between specific elements of these four components and to conduct monetary and human cost-benefit analyses of recommended approaches.