SPRINT: Lower Blood Pressure Target Reduces Cardiovascular Events

Blood pressure
Blood pressure
A lower blood pressure target may help prevent cardiovascular events and reduce all-cause mortality.

ORLANDO, Fla. — A lower systolic blood pressure target of less than 120 mm Hg, as compared with the currently recommended 140 mm Hg, was associated with lower rates of mortality and adverse cardiovascular (CV) events in high-risk patients, according to results from the SPRINT trial.

“We’ve known for many years that there’s a strong observational relationship between blood pressure and cardiovascular risk. There’s no threshold to that relationship. High blood pressure is very common, and it’s thought to be the most important cause of death and disability adjusted life-years around the world,” Paul K. Whelton, MB, MD, MSc, of Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, said during a press conference at the American Heart Association Scientific Sessions.

However, more clarification is needed, according to Dr. Whelton. He continued, “Any [anti]hypertensive therapy is known for a long time to reduce risk, and the big question that remains for us in practice is how low should we take that blood pressure?”

In SPRINT (Systolic Blood Pressure Intervention Trial), the results of which were simultaneously published in the New England Journal of Medicine, Dr. Whelton and colleagues sought to evaluate the effect of more intensive treatment for hypertension than is currently recommended by most guidelines.

To qualify for inclusion, participants had to be at least 50 years old, have a treated or untreated systolic blood pressure of 130 mm Hg to 180 mm Hg, and at least one other CV risk factor. These included clinical or subclinical cardiovascular disease (CVD), chronic kidney disease (CKD), a Framingham Risk Score of at least 15% for 10-year CVD risk, or age of at least 75 years or older. Patients who had diabetes or a previous stroke were excluded.

This article originally appeared on Endocrinology Advisor