Among chronic hemodialysis patients with hypertension, blood pressure should be lowered. Blood pressure reduction with antihypertensive drugs does not increase mortality; in contrast, meta-analysis of randomized trials suggests that treatment of hypertension in this high-risk population may, in fact, improve cardiovascular outcomes. The association of low blood pressure with increased mortality in longitudinal studies should not be considered as evidence against lowering blood pressure. Lowering blood pressure among hypertensive patients should primarily be done by sodium restriction and dry-weight reduction. Treatment is perhaps better directed to home blood pressure than pre- or post-dialysis blood pressure recordings. Although no firm data are available, it appears that treating home blood pressure to <140/90 mm Hg appears reasonable. Nonetheless, all blood pressure recordings during dialysis are important to ensure patient safety. Adequately designed and powered randomized trials are needed to examine the notion that blood pressure lowering and, if so, to what level of blood pressure will improve clinically meaningful outcomes among chronic dialysis patients.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Internal Medicine
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine