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Treatment of hypertension in blacks

INTRODUCTION

Hypertension is a major problem in black patients; the incidence and prevalence of cardiovascular and renal complications of hypertension are greater than in other race/ethnicity groups. The adjusted relative risk of stroke, for example, is more than twice as high in hypertensive blacks as compared with hypertensive whites [1]. As a result, effective antihypertensive therapy is particularly important in these patients [2]. (See "Hypertensive complications in blacks".)

According to the 2010 recommendations from the International Society on Hypertension in Blacks [3], antihypertensive therapy is recommended for blacks without target organ damage or concomitant cardiovascular diseases at blood pressures greater than 135/85 mmHg and, for those at higher risk, at blood pressures greater than 130/80 mmHg. In addition, monotherapy is de-emphasized in favor of combination therapy. On the other hand, the need for earlier treatment and the use of combination therapy has been questioned [4].

In addition to needing more widespread and effective therapy of blacks with hypertension, novel methods to enhance screening and patient education, such as that illustrated by the barber-based interventional trial [5], may increase hypertension control in this population.

CHOICE OF ANTIHYPERTENSIVE DRUGS

The optimal choice of drug or combination of drugs in black patients principally depends upon the presence or absence of comorbid conditions and the specific efficacy of the agent(s) to attain goal blood pressure [6]. Overall, the choice of antihypertensive drugs in black patients is similar to that in other groups.

Overview — Recommendations about the choice of antihypertensive therapy are presented elsewhere. Briefly:

         

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Literature review current through: Oct 2014. | This topic last updated: Jan 21, 2014.
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