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Study could alter approach to treating high blood pressure

 

It was 2011 when David Baldwin got a diagnosis familiar to millions of Americans: He had high blood pressure. He did as his doctor advised – lost some weight, cut back on salt and took medication. Eight months later, it had dropped a little.

“That’s when I saw the flier on the elevator at work,” said Baldwin, a research coordinator at the University of Alabama at Birmingham who was 62 at the time.

That was his ticket into a study that, four years later, is now likely to launch a wave of newly aggressive treatment of high blood pressure across the U.S. Results showed 43 percent fewer cardiovascular disease-related deaths in patients who dropped their systolic pressure to near 120 – instead of settling for under 140, the target that has long been considered acceptable – in findings that headlined the American Heart Association’s annual Scientific Sessions in Orlando, Florida.

According to the AHA, one out of every three American adults – about 80 million – has high blood pressure, increasing their risk for heart disease, stroke and other health problems. For more on this story, CLICK HERE. 

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