To provide updated, evidence-based recommendations for the diagnosis and assessment of high blood pressure in adults.
For people with high blood pressure, the assignment of a diagnosis of hypertension depends on the appropriate measurement of blood pressure, the level of the blood pressure elevation, the duration of follow-up and the presence of concomitant vascular risk factors, target organ damage and established atherosclerotic diseases. For people diagnosed with hypertension, defining the overall risk of adverse cardiovascular outcomes requires laboratory testing, a search for target organ damage and an assessment of the modifiable causes of hypertension. Out-of-clinic blood pressure assessment and echocardiography are options for selected patients.
People at increased risk of adverse cardiovascular outcomes and were identified and quantified.
Medline searches were conducted from the period of the last revision of the Canadian recommendations for the management of hypertension (May 1998 to October 2000). Reference lists were scanned, experts were polled, and the personal files of the subgroup members and authors were used to identify other studies. All relevant articles were reviewed and appraised, using prespecified levels of evidence, by content experts and methodological experts.
A high value was placed on the identification of people at increased risk of cardiovascular morbidity and mortality.
The identification of people at higher risk of cardiovascular disease will permit counselling for lifestyle manoeuvres and the introduction of antihypertensive drugs to reduce blood pressure for patients with sustained hypertension. In certain settings, and for specific classes of drugs, blood pressure lowering has been associated with reduced cardiovascular morbidity and/or mortality.
The present document contains detailed recommendations pertaining to aspects of the diagnosis and assessment of patients with hypertension, including the accurate measurement of blood pressure, criteria for the diagnosis of hypertension and recommendations for follow-up, routine and optional laboratory testing, assessment for renovascular hypertension, home and ambulatory blood pressure monitoring, and the role of echocardiography in hypertension.
All recommendations were graded according to strength of the evidence and voted on by the Canadian Hypertension Recommendations Working Group. Only the recommendations achieving high levels of consensus are reported here. These guidelines will be updated annually.
These recommendations are endorsed by the Canadian Hypertension Society, The Canadian Coalition for High Blood Pressure Prevention and Control, The College of Family Physicians of Canada, The Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada, The Adult Disease Division and Bureau of Cardio-Respiratory Diseases and Diabetes at the Centre for Chronic Disease Prevention and Control of Health Canada.
Abdominal symptoms are frequent in the normal elderly population, but only a minority contact doctors. The present study was performed to assess the impact of abdominal symptoms on primary health care and medicine consumption and, in addition, to describe factors that relate to resource consumption. A postal questionnaire was mailed to a random cohort of 859 Danish people at the age of 75. Seventy-nine percent returned the questionnaire. A total of 31% of the men and 42% of the women had experienced at least one abdominal symptom within the past year. Among these 25% had visited a doctor and a little less had taken medicine. The total expenses used on primary health care and medicine were 22,000 U.S. Dollars per 1000 persons. Factors related to visiting a doctor were not only the presence of symptoms but also the subject's concept of the symptom as a health problem. As a consequence, efforts to control expenses should also focus on why some subjects consider their symptoms a health-problem while others do not.
Ethnic disparities in access to health care and health outcomes are well documented. It is unclear whether similar differences exist between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people with chronic kidney disease in Canada. We determined whether access to care differed between status Aboriginal people (Aboriginal people registered under the federal Indian Act) and non-Aboriginal people with chronic kidney disease.
We identified 106 511 non-Aboriginal and 1182 Aboriginal patients with chronic kidney disease (estimated glomerular filtration rate less than 60 mL/min/1.73 m(2)). We compared outcomes, including hospital admissions, that may have been preventable with appropriate outpatient care (ambulatory-care-sensitive conditions) as well as use of specialist services, including visits to nephrologists and general internists.
Aboriginal people were almost twice as likely as non-Aboriginal people to be admitted to hospital for an ambulatory-care-sensitive condition (rate ratio 1.77, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.46-2.13). Aboriginal people with severe chronic kidney disease (estimated glomerular filtration rate
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The Canadian Cardiology Society recommends that patients should be seen within 2 weeks after an emergency department (ED) visit for heart failure (HF). We sought to investigate whether patients who had an ED visit for HF subsequently consult a physician within the current established benchmark, to explore factors related to physician consultation, and to examine whether delay in consultation is associated with adverse events (AEs) (death, hospitalization, or repeat ED visit).
Patients were recruited by nurses at 8 hospital EDs in Québec, Canada, and interviewed by telephone within 6 weeks of discharge and subsequently at 3 and 6 months. Clinical variables were extracted from medical charts by nurses. We used Cox regression in the analysis.
We enrolled 410 patients (mean age 74.9 ± 11.1 years, 53% males) with a confirmed primary diagnosis of HF. Only 30% consulted with a physician within 2 weeks post-ED visit. By 4 weeks, 51% consulted a physician. Over the 6-month follow-up, 26% returned to the ED, 25% were hospitalized, and 9% died. Patients who were followed up within 4 weeks were more likely to be older and have higher education and a worse quality of life. Patients who consulted a physician within 4 weeks of ED discharge had a lower risk of AEs (hazard ratio 0.59, 95% CI 0.35-0.99).
Prompt follow-up post-ED visit for HF is associated with lower risk for major AEs. Therefore, adherence to current HF guideline benchmarks for timely follow-up post-ED visit is crucial.
In medical practices that do not have rosters, only the number of patients who come to the practice can be enumerated: the number who might have visited if they had had a reason to do so remains unknown. The Quadratic Odds Estimator is a technique for estimating the total number of patients cared for by a primary care medical practice, including the non-visitors. A revised version of the model is shown to have an error of less than 1% in predicting the number of patients at risk of visiting a primary care medical practice. Aggregate and sex-specific estimates of total practice size are shown to be comparable to within 2%. The model estimates the prevalence of hypertension among the patients of two family practice resdencies as 18 and 11%. The rationale for employing unconventional regression weights and dual regressions is explained.
Community clinics offer potential for timelier outbreak detection and monitoring than emergency departments. However, the accuracy of syndrome definitions used in surveillance has never been evaluated in community settings. This study's objective was to assess the accuracy of syndrome definitions based on diagnostic codes in physician claims for identifying 5 syndromes (fever, gastrointestinal, neurological, rash, and respiratory including influenza-like illness) in community clinics.
We selected a random sample of 3,600 community-based primary care physicians who practiced in the fee-for-service system in the province of Quebec, Canada in 2005-2007. We randomly selected 10 visits per physician from their claims, stratifying on syndrome type and presence, diagnosis, and month. Double-blinded chart reviews were conducted by telephone with consenting physicians to obtain information on patient diagnoses for each sampled visit. The sensitivity, specificity, and positive predictive value (PPV) of physician claims were estimated by comparison to chart review.
1,098 (30.5%) physicians completed the chart review. A chart entry on the date of the corresponding claim was found for 10,529 (95.9%) visits. The sensitivity of syndrome definitions based on diagnostic codes in physician claims was low, ranging from 0.11 (fever) to 0.44 (respiratory), the specificity was high, and the PPV was moderate to high, ranging from 0.59 (fever) to 0.85 (respiratory). We found that rarely used diagnostic codes had a higher probability of being false-positives, and that more commonly used diagnostic codes had a higher PPV.
Future research should identify physician, patient, and encounter characteristics associated with the accuracy of diagnostic codes in physician claims. This would enable public health to improve syndromic surveillance, either by focusing on physician claims whose diagnostic code is more likely to be accurate, or by using all physician claims and weighing each according to the likelihood that its diagnostic code is accurate.
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The aim of the study was to describe the adherence of Finnish people with glaucoma to prescribed treatment plans, the factors connected to adherence and to produce knowledge for developing effective interventions to improve adherence to treatment plans.
This was a cross-sectional study.
The data (n = 249) were collected at one point in time from Finnish adults diagnosed with glaucoma with a questionnaire covering adherence to treatment. These patients used glaucoma medication and had follow-up appointments with ophthalmologists.
Sixty-seven percent (n = 166) of the patients with glaucoma were very adherent to the prescribed treatment plan in terms of self-care, treatment and follow-up visits. Almost all were very adherent to medical care (97%, n = 242). More than half of those who had received information from physicians and nurses were very adherent to treatment (66%, n = 163). Two factors, support from physicians and nurses (p
The aim of the study was to describe adherence to health regimens and the factors associated with it among adult frequent attenders (FAs).
This was a cross-sectional study. The study sample consisted of 462 healthcare FAs in 7 municipal health centres in northern Finland. An FA is a person who has had 8 or more outpatient visits to a GP (in a health centre) or 4 or more outpatient visits to a university hospital during 1 year. The main outcome was self-reported adherence to health regimens.
Of the FAs, 82% adhered well to their health regimens. Carrying out self-care, medical care and feeling responsible for self-care were the most significant predictors to good adherence in all models. No significant differences in adherence were found in male and female subjects, age groups or educational levels. Support from healthcare providers and support from relatives were not significant predictors of good adherence.
FAs in Finland adhere well to health regimens and exceptionally well to medication. Variables that predict the best adherence of FAs to health regimens are carrying out self-care, receiving medical care and feeling responsible for self-care.
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