Back to Journals » Clinical Interventions in Aging » Volume 8

What is an appropriate blood pressure goal for the elderly: review of recent studies and practical recommendations

Authors Denker MG, Cohen DL

Received 19 September 2013

Accepted for publication 11 October 2013

Published 14 November 2013 Volume 2013:8 Pages 1505—1517


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 3

Matthew G Denker, Debbie L Cohen

Perelman School of Medicine, Renal, Electrolyte and Hypertension Division, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, USA

Abstract: Hypertension is common in the elderly, and isolated systolic hypertension is responsible for the majority of hypertension in this population. Hypertension in the elderly can be attributed to numerous structural and functional changes to the vasculature that develop with advancing age. Increased systolic blood pressure is associated with adverse outcomes, including stroke, cardiovascular disease, and death. Some studies demonstrate an inverse relationship between cardiovascular outcomes and diastolic blood pressure whereas other studies show a J-shaped or U-shaped association between blood pressure and outcomes. The complex J-shaped association coupled with the unique characteristics of elderly patients have led to much debate and confusion regarding the treatment of hypertension in this population. Clinical trials indicate a benefit to therapy in older adults, and there appears to be no age threshold above which antihypertensive therapy should be withheld. Treatment of hypertension in elderly patients is further complicated by increased susceptibility to brain hypoperfusion with orthostatic hypotension as well as the risk of drug–drug interactions. We recommend a systolic blood pressure goal of <140 mmHg in patients less than 80 years of age and a systolic blood pressure goal of 140–150 mmHg in patients 80 years of age or older. Reduction of blood pressure is probably more important than the specific agent used and initiation of drug therapy with an angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitor, angiotensin receptor blocker, calcium channel blocker, or diuretic are all reasonable options, and the decision should be individualized based on underlying comorbidities.

Keywords: hypertension, blood pressure target, antihypertensive treatment, elderly

Creative Commons License This work is published and licensed by Dove Medical Press Limited. The full terms of this license are available at and incorporate the Creative Commons Attribution - Non Commercial (unported, v3.0) License. By accessing the work you hereby accept the Terms. Non-commercial uses of the work are permitted without any further permission from Dove Medical Press Limited, provided the work is properly attributed. For permission for commercial use of this work, please see paragraphs 4.2 and 5 of our Terms.

Download Article [PDF]  View Full Text [HTML][Machine readable]


Readers of this article also read:

Emerging and future therapies for hemophilia

Carr ME, Tortella BJ

Journal of Blood Medicine 2015, 6:245-255

Published Date: 3 September 2015

Green synthesis of water-soluble nontoxic polymeric nanocomposites containing silver nanoparticles

Prozorova GF, Pozdnyakov AS, Kuznetsova NP, Korzhova SA, Emel’yanov AI, Ermakova TG, Fadeeva TV, Sosedova LM

International Journal of Nanomedicine 2014, 9:1883-1889

Published Date: 16 April 2014

Methacrylic-based nanogels for the pH-sensitive delivery of 5-Fluorouracil in the colon

Ashwanikumar N, Kumar NA, Nair SA, Kumar GS

International Journal of Nanomedicine 2012, 7:5769-5779

Published Date: 15 November 2012

A novel preparation method for silicone oil nanoemulsions and its application for coating hair with silicone

Hu Z, Liao M, Chen Y, Cai Y, Meng L, Liu Y, Lv N, Liu Z, Yuan W

International Journal of Nanomedicine 2012, 7:5719-5724

Published Date: 12 November 2012

Cross-linked acrylic hydrogel for the controlled delivery of hydrophobic drugs in cancer therapy

Deepa G, Thulasidasan AK, Anto RJ, Pillai JJ, Kumar GS

International Journal of Nanomedicine 2012, 7:4077-4088

Published Date: 27 July 2012

Crystallization after intravitreal ganciclovir injection

Pitipol Choopong, Nattaporn Tesavibul, Nattawut Rodanant

Clinical Ophthalmology 2010, 4:709-711

Published Date: 14 July 2010