Author Interviews, Blood Pressure - Hypertension / 08.11.2016 Interview with: Alejandro de la Sierra, MD, PhD, FESC, FAHA Professor of Medicine Head, Internal Medicine Department Hospital Mutua Terrassa University of Barcelona, Spain What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: The Systolic Blood Pressure Intervention (SPRINT) trial has demonstrated that a strategy of systolic blood pressure (BP) reduction to a goal of 120 mmHg in selected hypertensive patients prevents the development of cardiovascular complications and mortality. The trial used automated office BP measurements. However, ambulatory BP monitoring (ABPM) has demonstrated to be superior to office BP in predicting cardiovascular events and mortality. We aimed to evaluate ambulatory BP values in hypertensive patients from the Spanish ABPM Registry who meet eligibility criteria for the SPRINT trial. The results indicated that one third of our hypertensive population met such eligibility criteria and that ABPM values were considerably lower than office BP, with 42% of subjects having daytime BP below 130 mmHg and 21% with 24-hour BP below 120 mmHg. (more…)
Author Interviews, Blood Pressure - Hypertension, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Heart Disease, JACC, Salt-Sodium / 06.10.2016 Interview with: Nancy Cook ScD Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School Professor in the Department of Epidemiology Harvard T.H. Chan School Public Health Brigham & Women’s Hospital Division of Preventive Medicine Boston, MA 02215 What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: The association of sodium intake with later mortality has been controversial. While there is a well-accepted effect on blood pressure, the effects of sodium on later cardiovascular disease, and particularly mortality, have been subject to dispute. While the adverse effects of high sodium are now widely accepted, effects at lower levels of sodium intake are less clear. Some recent studies have found a J-shaped relationship, with increased disease rates among those consuming lower levels of sodium, contrary to the effects on blood pressure. In contrast, we found a direct linear relationship of usual intake of sodium with later mortality over 20 years of follow-up. Those with the lowest sodium intake experienced the lowest mortality. Our measure of intake was based on the average over 1-3 years of several measures of 24hr urine sodium excretion, the gold standard of sodium measurement. This is much more precise than measurements based on a single 24hr sodium excretion or especially on a spot urine sample, which is used in many publications that found the J-shaped curve. Our data were assessed in a healthy cohort of men and women without hypertension or cardiovascular disease, so had less potential bias due to these factors. We thus believe that our results showing the lowest mortality among those consuming the lowest levels of sodium are more accurate. (more…)
Author Interviews, Blood Pressure - Hypertension, CDC, Compliance, Race/Ethnic Diversity / 19.09.2016 Interview with: Matthew Ritchey, DPT, PT, OCS, MPH Epidemiologist Division for Heart Disease and Stroke Prevention National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion What is the background for this study? Response: High blood pressure is a leading cause of heart disease, stroke, kidney disease and death. Unfortunately, almost one in three U.S. adults (around 75 million) has high blood pressure, and nearly half of that group (about 34 million) doesn’t have it under control. As part of CDC’s ongoing efforts to monitor trends and risk factors contributing to cardiovascular disease, we collaborated with colleagues at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to look at blood pressure medicine nonadherence among Medicare Part D enrollees ages 65 and over. Being nonadherent means that patients skip doses of their medicine or stop taking it altogether. (more…)
Author Interviews, Blood Pressure - Hypertension, Heart Disease, JACC, Kidney Disease / 19.09.2016 Interview with: Elvira Gosmanova MD Department of Nephrology University of Tennessee Health Science Center Memphis TN, 38163 What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: It has been long known that elevated blood pressure is a risk factor for numerous adverse health-related outcomes. However, the majority of individuals do not have blood pressure in a constant range. In contrary, blood pressure measured in the same individual tends to fluctuate over time. Moreover, some individuals have more blood pressure fluctuation, as compared with others. The impact of fluctuation in blood pressure is still poorly understood. Smaller studies suggested that increased fluctuation in blood pressure may be associated with hazardous health outcomes. However, large scale studies were still lacking. Therefore, we conducted a study involving close to 3 million US veterans to investigate the association of increased visit-to-visit variability of systolic blood pressure (which was our measure of fluctuation of blood pressure over time) and all-cause mortality, and incident coronary heart disease, stroke, and end-stage renal disease. We found that there was strong and graded increase in the risk of all the above outcomes with increasing visit-to-visit variability of systolic blood pressure. (more…)
AHA Journals, Author Interviews, Blood Pressure - Hypertension, Heart Disease / 19.09.2016 Interview with: Islam Elgendy, MD Cardiology Fellow University of Florida What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: The optimal systolic blood pressure target in adults with coronary artery disease is not well known. The Eighth Joint National Committee Panel recommended a target therapeutic goal <150 mm Hg for adults aged ≥60 years and <140 mm Hg in those aged <60 years. These recommendations are inconsistent with the different society guidelines (such as American Heart Association/American College of Cardiology, European Society of Cardiology, and American Society of Hypertension) which recommended a therapeutic target < 140 mm Hg. Given that the dyad of hypertension and coronary artery disease is the most prevalent chronic disease dyad among adults, we aimed to assess the long term risk of all-cause mortality with the different systolic blood pressure targets. Using the extended follow-up data from the US cohort of the INVEST trial, we demonstrated that achieving a systolic blood pressure of 130 to <140 mm Hg in the initial 2-3 years of treatment is associated with reduced all-cause mortality after ≈11.6 years of follow-up in hypertensive patients with coronary artery disease. (more…)
AHA Journals, Author Interviews, Blood Pressure - Hypertension, Heart Disease / 17.09.2016 Interview with: Holly Mattix-Kramer, MD, MPH Public Health Sciences Medicine, Nephrology Associate Professor Loyola Medicine, Illinois What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: The background is that the Systolic Blood Pressure Lowering Intervention Trial (SPRINT) showed that intensive systolic blood pressure lowering reduces all-cause mortality by 27% compared to standard blood pressure lowering among adults age 50 years and older without diabetes or stroke but with high cardiovascular disease risk. We applied these findings to the U.S. population and asked "What if intensive systolic blood pressure lowering were applied to the U.S. population who meet SPRINT eligibility criteria? We found that approximately 18.1 million U.S. adults meet SPRINT criteria and that their annual mortality rate is 2.2%. If intensive systolic blood pressure lowering reduces all-cause mortality by 27%, then the annual mortality rate would be reduced to 1.6% and approximately 107,500 deaths would be prevented each year. (more…)
Author Interviews, Blood Pressure - Hypertension, JAMA, Stanford / 16.09.2016 Interview with: Ilana B. Richman, MD Palo Alto VA Health Care System, Palo Alto, California Center for Primary Care and Outcomes Research/Center for Health Policy Department of Medicine Stanford University School of Medicine Stanford, California What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: In November of 2015, researchers published results from the Systolic Blood Pressure Intervention Trial (SPRINT). This large, NIH-funded study compared a systolic blood pressure target of 120 mm Hg vs 140 mm Hg among hypertensive, nondiabetic patients at elevated risk for cardiovascular disease. SPRINT reported a 25% reduction in the rate of cardiovascular disease and death among those treated to a lower target. Those treated to a lower target blood pressure, though, experienced certain adverse events more frequently. Our cost effectiveness analysis asked two questions: given the potential risks and benefits described in SPRINT, does achieving a lower systolic blood pressure result in net benefit over the course of a lifetime? And if it does, how much would it cost, compared to standard treatment? We found that achieving a lower blood pressure target does result in a net benefit, with a gain of about 0.9 years of life (quality adjusted) among those treated to a lower target compared to those treated to a standard target. This gain, though, required some investment. We found that treating to a lower blood pressure target cost $23,777 per quality-adjusted life year gained. Compared to other commonly used interventions here in the US, this would be considered an excellent value. (more…)
Author Interviews, Blood Pressure - Hypertension, Electronic Records, Heart Disease, Primary Care / 18.08.2016 Interview with: Tom Marshall, PhD, MRCGP, FFPH Professor of public health and primary care Institute of Applied Health Research University of Birmingham Edgbaston, Birmingham What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Shortly before the Health Checks programme began, a programme of targeted case finding was set up in Sandwell in the West Midlands. In general practices in the area a programme nurse searched electronic medical records to identify untreated patients at high risk of cardiovascular disease. The nurse then invited high risk patients for assessment in the practice and those who needed treatment were referred to their GP for further action. This was implemented in stages across 26 general practices, allowing it to be evaluated as a stepped wedge randomised controlled trial. The programme was successful, resulting in a 15.5% increase in the number of untreated high risk patients started on either antihypertensives or statins. (more…)
Author Interviews, Blood Pressure - Hypertension, Gout, Johns Hopkins, Nutrition, Rheumatology / 16.08.2016 Interview with: Stephen P. Juraschek, MD, PhD Fellow, Division of General Internal Medicine Johns Hopkins Hospital What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Diet has long been viewed as an important way to lower uric acid levels to prevent gout attacks; however, there is little evidence about whether a particular dietary pattern might be effective for lowering uric acid. For the first time we show that the DASH diet, an effective diet for lowering blood pressure, it lowers uric acid levels substantially in people with abnormally high uric acid levels. (more…)
Author Interviews, Blood Pressure - Hypertension, Vitamin D / 08.07.2016 Interview with: Dr. Nicola Veronese University of Padova Department of Medicine - DIMED, Geriatrics Division Padova, Italy What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: In the last 5 years, some studies investigated the possible association between hypovitaminosis D and orthostatic hypotension. However, all these studies were cross-sectional,  not disentangling if hypovitaminosis D precedes or follows orthostatic hypotension. In our work, we reported that low vitamin D at baseline predict the onset of orthostatic hypotension at follow-up in older people. This association was stronger in women than in men. (more…)
Author Interviews, Blood Pressure - Hypertension, Mineral Metabolism, UT Southwestern / 06.07.2016 Interview with: Wanpen Vongpatanasin, MD Professor of Medicine Norman & Audrey Kaplan Chair in Hypertension Research Director, Hypertension Section Cardiology Division UT Southwestern Medical Center What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Inorganic phosphate has been added to our processed food at an enormous amount as food preservatives and flavor enhancer such that typical American diet contains twice as much as the recommended daily allowance. A high phosphate (Pi) diet was recently shown to trigger blood pressure (BP) elevation in otherwise normal rats but the mechanisms are still unknown.We found that rats treated with high phosphate diet that mimics the excess Pi consumed by the general American population developed high BP related to increased sympathetic nerve activity (SNA), resulting in excessive peripheral vasoconstriction. This exaggerated increase in SNA and BP is evident particularly during exercise. This study is conducted in collaboration with Drs. Masaki Mizuno and Scott Smith, the two leading experts in neural control of circulation at UT Southwestern in the Department of Health Care Sciences. (more…)
Author Interviews, Blood Pressure - Hypertension, Mineral Metabolism, Nutrition, UT Southwestern / 04.07.2016 Interview with: Dr. Wanpen Vongpatanasin MD The Norman and Audrey Kaplan Chair in Hypertension UT Southwestern Medical Center What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and dairy products, known as the DASH diet, is known to reduce blood pressure in hypertensive patients. More recently, the DASH diet was shown to reduce oxidative stress in people with and without high blood pressure . However, the main nutritional ingredient responsible for these beneficial effects of the DASH diet remain unknown. Because the DASH diet is rich in potassium (K), magnesium (Mg), and alkali, we performed a randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled study to compare effects of KMg Citrate (KMgCit), K Chloride (KCl), and K Citrate (KCit) to allow dissociation of the three in hypertensive and prehypertensive individuals. This study was conducted in collaboration with Drs. Charles Pak and Orson Moe at UT Southwestern, the two leading experts in the field of Mineral Metabolism. We found that oxidative stress was markedly reduced by KMgCit powder compared to placebo, K Chloride, and K Citrate. On the hand, KMgCit has no significant effects on blood pressure . Editor's note:  DO NOT Take Potassium supplements unless under the direction of your health care provider. (more…)
Annals Internal Medicine, Author Interviews, Blood Pressure - Hypertension, Metabolic Syndrome, OBGYNE / 28.06.2016 Interview with: Dr. Jian-Min Niu Department of Obstetrics Guangdong Women and Children Hospita Guangzhou , China What is the background for this study? Response: Physiological alteration leads to the question of whether the criteria for the diagnosis of gestational hypertension are suitable because the current criteria (systolic BP [SBP] ≥140 mm Hg and diastolic BP [DBP] ≥90 mm Hg) are derived from the non-pregnant population. The optimal blood pressure levels in pregnant women remain an open question. Recent studies have demonstrated associations between prehypertension before pregnancy and hypertensive disorders during pregnancy and gestational diabetes mellitus. To our knowledge, the association between prehypertension during pregnancy and postpartum cardiovascular risk has not been addressed. (more…)
Author Interviews, Blood Pressure - Hypertension, Cleveland Clinic, JAMA / 16.06.2016 Interview with: Krishna Patel, MD, PG Y3 Resident Internal Medicine Residency Program Cleveland Clinic Cleveland, OH 44195 What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Dr. Patel: In our outpatient resident clinic practice, we found that patients with poorly controlled hypertension presenting with blood pressures in the hypertensive urgency range (SBP>=180mmHg or DBP >=110 mmHg) but with no symptoms of end-organ damage were common, however there was no clear cut manner in which these patient's blood pressures were treated. According to the comfort level of the physician, these patients were managed in the office and on serial outpatient visits and some of the patients would be referred to the emergency department for management of these elevated blood pressures. Given there was not much prior literature on this topic, we decided to study the prevalence and short term cardiovascular outcomes for this population of patients. We found that hypertensive urgency is quite common in the office setting (4.6% in our study). In absence of symptoms of end organ damage, the short term risk of major cardiovascular events was very low around 1%, and patients who were referred to the ED for management of blood pressures had a lot of unnecessary testing and more hospital admissions than those who were managed as an outpatient. (more…)
Author Interviews, Blood Pressure - Hypertension, Heart Disease, JACC / 14.06.2016 Interview with: Duk-Woo Park, MD, PhD Division of Cardiology, Asan Medical Center University of Ulsan College of Medicine and National Evidence-based Healthcare Collaborating Agency Seoul, Republic of Korea What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Currently, less restrictive blood pressure (BP) target by the 2014 hypertension guidelines (JNC-8) and more intensive BP target of the SPRINT is now conflicting, which causes uncertainty and confusion among clinicians. In our study, the proportion of persons who would meet the SPRINT BP goals is substantially less than those who would meet the 2014 guideline blood pressure goals. There is a positive association between the risk of major cardiovascular events and increasing levels of BP control status under different 2014 guideline and SPRINT criteria. Our study reconfirmed the findings of the SPRINT trials in real-world population. (more…)
Author Interviews, Blood Pressure - Hypertension, NEJM, Stroke / 09.06.2016 Interview with: Adnan I. Qureshi, M.D Zeenat Qureshi Stroke Research Center University of Minnesota Minneapolis, MN What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Dr. Qureshi: An acute hypertensive response in patients with intracerebral hemorrhage is common and may be associated with hematoma expansion and increased mortality. The Antihypertensive Treatment of Acute Cerebral Hemorrhage II (ATACH-2) trial was designed to determine the efficacy of rapidly lowering systolic blood pressure in patients in an earlier time window after symptom onset than evaluated in previous trials. The trial was based on evidence that hematoma expansion and subsequent death or disability might be reduced with very early and more aggressive reduction in systolic blood pressure in those at higher risk due to presence of high systolic blood pressure at presentation. The trial randomized eligible subjects with intracerebral hemorrhage to test the superiority of intensive (goal 110-140 mmHg) over standard (goal 140-180 mmHg) systolic blood pressure reduction using intravenous nicardipine within 4.5 hours of symptom onset. Of a total of 1000 subjects that were recruited with a mean (standard deviation) baseline systolic blood pressure of 200.6 (27.0) mmHg, 500 were assigned to intensive-treatment and 500 to standard-treatment. Enrollment was stopped following a pre-specified interim analysis because of futility. The primary endpoint of death or disability at 3 months post-randomization was observed in 38.7% (186/481) of subjects receiving intensive treatment and 37.7% (181/480) subjects receiving standard treatment (relative risk: 1.03; 95% confidence interval: 0.85 to 1.27), adjusted for age, initial Glasgow Coma scale, and presence or absence of intraventricular hemorrhage. The rate of renal adverse events within 7 days of randomization was significantly higher among subjects randomized to intensive treatment. Compared to a target systolic blood pressure of 140-180 mmHg, treating subjects with intracerebral hemorrhage to a target systolic blood pressure of 110-140 mmHg did not lower the rate of death or disability. (more…)
Author Interviews, Blood Pressure - Hypertension, Compliance / 04.06.2016 Interview with: Dr Prashanth Patel MSc, FRCP, FRCPath Consultant Metabolic Physician/ Chemical Pathologist and Head of Service Department of Chemical Pathology and Metabolic Diseases Honorary Senior Lecturer Dept of Cardiovascular Sciences University of Leicester What is the background for this study? Dr. Patel: Hypertension (HTN) is one of the most important and common chronic treatable condition. It affects nearly one third of the adult population. Nearly one fifth of patients treated for hypertension are thought to be resistant to treatment and these patients have a high mortality from cardiovascular diseases. Percutaneous radiofrequency catheter-based renal sympathetic denervation (renal denervation, RD) may be a potential treatment for resistant hypertension. Although RD is a safe procedure, it is irreversible and expensive. It is important that patients’ suitability for renal denervation is carefully assessed to maximise the potential benefits of the procedure. Therefore causes of pseudo-resistant hypertension namely white-coat hypertension, suboptimal pharmacological antihypertensive treatment and non-adherence to antihypertensive medications and secondary hypertension are needed to be robustly ruled out before considering a patient as suitable for renal denervation. (more…)
AHA Journals, Author Interviews, Blood Pressure - Hypertension, Environmental Risks / 01.06.2016 Interview with: Tao Liu Ph.D Guangdong Provincial Institute of Public Health Guangdong Provincial Center for Disease Control and Prevention What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Hypertension is the most important cause of disability and the leading risk factor for death globally and causes approximately 16.5% of all deaths. Since the 1990s, many epidemiological studies have investigated the associations between air pollution exposure and hypertension, the two most common public health concerns. However, their results remain controversial. Some studies found an association between them, while other studies sowed either no association or an association only for selected pollutants. In order to quantitatively synthesize and interpret these inconsistent and controversial results, here we used a new analysis method (Meta-analysis) to combine results from different previous studies to estimate the overall effect of every air pollutant on hypertension. This is the first study to simultaneously estimate the effects of short-term and long-term exposure to air pollutants on hypertension by meta-analysis. These results could provide more explicit information for policy decisions and clinical use. (more…)
AHA Journals, Author Interviews, Blood Pressure - Hypertension, Cognitive Issues / 25.05.2016 Interview with: Bo (Bonnie) Qin, Ph.D. Postdoctoral Scholar Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey New Brunswick, NJ 08903 What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Dr. Qin: Preventing or delaying the age-related cognitive decline that typically precedes the onset of dementia is particularly important considering that no effective strategies for dementia treatment have been identified. Vascular conditions such as hypertension are thought to be risk factors for cognitive decline, but important gaps in the literature on this topic remain. Randomized clinical trials of blood pressure-lowering treatments for reducing the risk of cognitive decline or dementia have largely failed to achieve beneficial effects. However, over the past 6 years, scientific evidence has accumulated that blood pressure variability over monthly or yearly visits may lead to greater risk of stroke and small and larger vessel cerebrovascular diseases. They could lead to subsequent changes related to cognitive dysfunction among older adults. We, therefore, hypothesized that blood pressure variability between visits is associated with a faster rate of cognitive function among older adults. (more…)
AHA Journals, Alzheimer's - Dementia, Author Interviews, Blood Pressure - Hypertension, Cognitive Issues, Stroke / 23.05.2016 Interview with: Kazem Rahimi, DM, MSc Oxford Martin School University of Oxford United Kingdom What is the background for this study? Dr. Rahimi: Vascular dementia is the second most common cause of dementia and is increasing in prevalence worldwide. Vascular dementia often occurs after stroke and can cause apathy, depression, and a decline in cognitive function, and can eventually result in death. High blood pressure (BP) has been identified as a potential risk factor for the development of vascular dementia. However, previous studies, which have been small in size, have reported conflicting results on the relationship between blood pressure and vascular dementia. (more…)
AHA Journals, Author Interviews, Blood Pressure - Hypertension, Lancet, Salt-Sodium / 22.05.2016 Interview with: Prof Andrew Mente PhD Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics, McMaster University Hamilton, Canada Editor's Note:  Dr. Mente discusses his Lancet publication regarding salt intake below.  Dr. Mente's findings are disputed by the American Heart Association (AHA).  A statement from the AHA follows Dr. Mente's comments. What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Prof. Mente: Several prospective cohort studies have recently reported that both too little and too much sodium intake is associated with cardiovascular disease or mortality. Whether these associations vary between those individuals with and without high blood pressure (hypertension) is unknown. We found that low sodium intake (below 3 g/day), compared to average intake (3 to 6 g/day), is associated with more cardiovascular events and mortality, both in those with high blood pressure and in those without high blood pressure. So following the guidelines would put you at increased risk, compared to consuming an sodium at the population average level, regardless of whether you have high blood pressure or normal blood pressure. High sodium intake (above 6 g/day) compared to average intake, was associated with harm, but only in people with high blood pressure (no association in people without high blood pressure). (more…)
AHA Journals, Author Interviews, Blood Pressure - Hypertension, Columbia, Cost of Health Care / 19.05.2016 Interview with: Nathalie Moise, MD, MS Assistant Professor Center for Behavioral Cardiovascular Health Department of Medicine Columbia University Medical Center New York, NY 10032 What is the background for this study? Dr. Moise:  Our research aimed to compare the number of lives saved and changes in medical costs expected if intensive blood pressure goals of less than 120 mmHg were implemented in high cardiovascular disease risk patients. In 2014, the 8th Joint National Committee (JNC8) on Detection, Evaluation, and Treatment of High Blood Pressure issued new guidelines recommending that physicians aim for a systolic blood pressure (SBP) of 140 mmHg in adults with diabetes and/or chronic kidney disease and 150 mmHg in healthy adults over age 60. The new guidelines represented a major departure from previous JNC7 guidelines recommending SBPs of 130 mmHg and 140, mmHg for these groups, respectively. Under the 2014 guidelines, over 5 million fewer individuals annually would receive drug treatment to lower their blood pressure, compared with the prior 2003 guidelines. Recently, the Systolic Blood Pressure Intervention Trial (SPRINT) found that having a more intensive systolic blood pressure (SBP) goal of 120 mmHg in patients at high risk for cardiovascular disease reduced both cardiovascular events and mortality by about one quarter, compared with the current goal of 140 mmHg. These recent studies and guidelines have created uncertainty about the safest, most effective and high-value blood pressure goals for U.S. adults with hypertension, but no prior study has compared the cost-effectiveness of adding more intensive blood pressure goals in high cardiovascular disease risk groups to standard national primary prevention hypertension guidelines like JNC8 and JNC7. Our team at Columbia University Medical Center conducted a computer simulation study to determine the value of adding the lower, life-saving  systolic blood pressure goal identified in SPRINT to the JNC7 and JNC8 guidelines for high-risk patients between the ages of 35 and 74 years. (High risk was defined as existing cardiovascular disease, chronic kidney disease, or a 10-year cardiovascular disease risk greater than 15 percent in patients older than 50 years and with a pre-treatment SBP greater than 130 mmHg) (more…)
Aging, Author Interviews, Blood Pressure - Hypertension, Melatonin / 19.05.2016 Interview with: Dr. Denis Gubin The Tyumen Medical University Tyumen, Russia What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?  Dr. Gubin: The older we get, the more likely our circadian rhythms are disrupted. For example, blood pressure, BP, not only tends to increase but as well become more irregular. One of the possible causes is an age-dependent deficit of endogenous melatonin production. We have shown that exogenous melatonin helps to ameliorate both trends – lowers  blood pressure and also stabilizes and synchronizes blood pressure and heart rate variability. (more…)
Author Interviews, Blood Pressure - Hypertension, BMJ, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Nutrition / 18.05.2016 Interview with: Lea Borgi, MD, MMSc Renal Division, Brigham and Women’s Hospital What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Dr. Borgi:   The association of potatoes intake with the risk of developing hypertension has not been studied. In our analyses of more than 187,000 participants without a diagnosis of high blood pressure at baseline, we observed that higher intakes of boiled, baked or mashed potatoes and French fries were associated with an increased risk of developing hypertension. Indeed, when participants consumed 4 or more than 4 servings per week of boiled, baked or mashed potatoes as compared to 1 or less than one serving per month, the risk of hypertension increased by 11% (and 17% when French fries were consumed 4 or more than 4 times a week as compared to 1 or less than 1 serving per month). We also found that replacing one serving of boiled, baked or mashed potatoes per day with one serving of a non-starchy vegetable was associated with a lower risk of developing hypertension. (more…)
Author Interviews, Blood Pressure - Hypertension, Lifestyle & Health, Sleep Disorders / 15.05.2016 Interview with: Wisit Cheungpasitporn, MD, Nephrology Fellow Project mentor: Stephen B. Erickson, MD Departments of Nephrology and Hypertension Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Dr. Cheungpasitporn: The prevention and management of hypertension continue to be major public health challenges. Studies have shown the benefits of napping, including reduction of fatigue and improvement of alertness, mood and work performance. However, there have also been increasing reported associations between napping and cardiovascular disease, diabetes mellitus, strokes, and higher mortality from all causes. The risk of hypertension in adults who regularly take a nap is controversial. (more…)
Author Interviews, Blood Pressure - Hypertension, Insomnia, Sleep Disorders / 28.04.2016 Interview with: Haicong Li Director and Professor, Department of Geriatrics China-Japan Friendship Hospital Beijing, China. What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Based on our clinical observations over the years, we noticed two common phenomena:
  • One is that the occurrence of hypertension in patients with chronic sleep disorders tend to be higher than those with normal sleep conditions;
  • The other is that the blood pressure of some hypertensive patients cannot be lowered to normal level even with anti-hypertensive treatments, of which group many have sleep disorders.
So we hypothesized that the improvement of insomnia can effectively help lower the of hypertensive patients and the combination of anti-hypertensive medication and sedative-hypnotic drugs can achieve better therapeutic effects. In our experiment, a total of 402 patients with a diagnosis of insomnia and hypertension were selected and randomly divided into two groups. The treatment group (202 cases) received standard antihypertensive treatment with Estazolam and the control group (200 cases) received standard antihypertensive treatment with placebo. We measured the sedentary diastolic (SiSBP) and systolic blood pressure (SiDBP) before the treatment and every 7 days during the experiment. To assess the sleep quality and anxiety and depression levels of patients, we reported the scores of the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI), the Hamilton Anxiety Rating Scale (HAMA) and the Hamilton Depression Scale-17 (HAMD 17) at the same time points. At the conclusion of the experiment, PSQI, HAMA, and HAMD17 scores were significantly lower than those of the control group (P&lt;0.001). The insomnia treatment efficacy of Estazolam in the treatment group was 67.3%, significantly higher than that (14.0%) of the control group (P &lt; 0.001). The blood pressure of the treatment group showed significant improvement throughout the experiment. By Day 28, the decrease of SiSBP and SiDBP in the treatment group was significantly greater than that of the control group (SiSBP: 10.5±3.9 vs. 3.4±2.5; DiSBP: 8.1±3.6 vs. 2.7±2.1, mmHg, P&lt;0.001) and the compliance rate of goal BP (&lt;140/90 mmHg) was 74.8% with Estazolam, compared to 50.5% with placebo (P&lt;0.001). Thus, our findings indicated that the improvement of insomnia can significantly help lower the blood pressure in hypertensive patients. (more…)
Author Interviews, Blood Pressure - Hypertension, Kidney Disease / 22.04.2016 Interview with: Csaba P Kovesdy MD Fred Hatch Professor of Medicine Director, Clinical Outcomes and Clinical Trials Program Division of Nephrology, University of Tennessee Health Science Center Nephrology Section Chief, Memphis VA Medical Center Memphis TN, 38163 What is the background for this study? Dr. Kovesdy: Older patients experience several physiologic changes which could modify their response to blood-pressure lowering. In fact, hypertension treatment guidelines such as JNC8 recommend slightly higher blood pressure targets when treating elderly patients. Patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) have been excluded from most hypertension treatment trials, hence the blood pressure treatment goals in this group are mainly derived based on extrapolations. Even less is known about the effects of age on the association of blood pressure with mortality and various other clinical outcomes in patients with CKD. (more…)
Author Interviews, Blood Pressure - Hypertension, Brain Cancer - Brain Tumors / 22.04.2016 Interview with: Hervé Chneiweiss MD PhD Bâtiment A3 pièce 336 Case courrier 2 Plasticité Gliale et Tumeurs cérébrales Neuroscience Paris Seine (directeur) Inserm/Université Pierre et Marie Curie What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Dr. Chneiweiss: Treatments available for glioblastoma -- malignant brain tumors -- have little effect. An international collaboration[1] led by the Laboratoire Neurosciences Paris-Seine (CNRS/ INSERM/UPMC)[2] tested active ingredients from existing medications and eventually identified one compound of interest, prazosin, on these tumors. We chose to study the most common malignant tumors that develop from brain cells, glioblastomas, which represent the fourth most frequent cause of cancer deaths among adults and the second in children. This is due to the inefficacy of current treatments. Indeed, a glioblastoma can resist treatment and reawaken from a very small number of tumor cells called glioblastoma-initiating cells (GIC). It is these cells -- whose characteristics and properties resemble those of stem cells -- that were targeted in the study. Rather than trying to discover new compounds, the team opted for repositioning existing drugs. In other words, we tested a collection of substances used for so long to treat other conditions that their patents have now fallen into the public domain[3]. This method makes it possible to develop new active ingredients cheaply and very rapidly. Twelve hundred compounds were thus tested on normal human neural stem cells and on glioblastoma-initiating cells from different aggressive tumors. Twelve of these compounds showed a toxic effect on GIC -- and none on the normal neural stem cells. The most effective was prazosin. Tested in mice carrying glioblastoma-initiating cells, prazosin significantly reduced the size of tumors and prolonged survival of the mice by more than 50%. [1] Including scientists from the Laboratoire d'Innovation Thérapeutique (CNRS/Université de Strasbourg), the Stanford University Institute for Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine (USA) and the Instituto Estadual do Cérebro Paulo Niemeyer in Rio de Janeiro (Brazil). [2] This laboratory forms part of the Institut de Biologie Paris-Seine. [3] Pharmaceutical compounds are protected by a patent for 20 years after their discovery. Because of the length of the clinical trials that are necessary before a drug can be put on the market, the duration of their patent protection does not normally exceed 10-15 years after a Marketing Authorization (MA) is granted. (more…)