SPECIALIST OFFICE OF INTERNAL MEDICINE

Andrea Džumhur, MD, PhD

When should high blood pressure be treated?

Up until recently, the treatment of a high blood pressure had a guideline – “the lower the better”. However, according to the latest guidelines published two months ago by the European Society of Cardiology, the intense lowering of blood pressure is not necessary.

Until now it was recommended to lower the pressure by treatment to 130/85 mmHg, while also trying to achieve the so-called ideal blood pressure of 120/80 mmHg in the general population, and especially in the so-called risk groups (diabetics, and those recovering from myocardial infarction and stroke). According to new recommendations, higher blood pressure values are tolerated, especially in the elderly. If there are no risk factors, blood pressure should only be treated if the change in one’s lifestyle (regular exercising, smoking cessation and dietary salt restriction) fails to regulate it.