Profile of hypertensives as a determinant of long-term antihypertensive medication needs.
The experience of 110 hypertensives who participated in a worksite stepped-care treatment program has been examined to draw a patient profile at entry that would determine medication needs on a long-term basis. Patients entered untreated with a blood pressure (BP) level of greater than or equal to 160 mm Hg systolic and/or greater than or equal to 95 mm HG diastolic (DBP) and had a minimum follow-up of 1 year. Treatment was initiated with diuretics, and additional drugs were added as necessary to achieve BP control. Patients were divided into three groups according to initial DBP levels: Group A (33 patients, greater than or equal to 105 mm Hg), Group B (43 patients, 95-104 mm Hg), and Group C (34 patients, less than 95 mm Hg). Using a life table method, we analyzed the therapeutic experience of these patients to obtain 5-year cumulative rates of adding a second drug to diuretics. Within the first 2 years of treatment, the cumulative rates were: 64% in Group A, 33% in Group B, and 23% in Group C. In all three groups the rates after the second year remained stable. This stepped-care approach resulted in BP control (less than 160/95) which ranged from 78% in the first year to 96% in the fifth year. Findings suggest that initial DBP level and age are principal factors in determining medication needs. Furthermore, at higher DBP levels, younger nonwhite and younger white males are most likely to require a second drug within the first year of treatment. The need for a second drug is apparent within the first 2 years.
- Copyright © 1981 by American Heart Association