NYMC Faculty Publications

Title

Drug Treatment of Hypertension in Older Patients with Diabetes Mellitus

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

May 2018

Department

Medicine

Abstract

INTRODUCTION: Hypertension is more prevalent in the elderly (age>65 years) diabetic population than in the general population and shows an increasing prevalence with advancing age. Both diabetes mellitus (DM) and hypertension are independent risk factors for cardiovascular (CV) related morbidity and mortality. Optimal BP targets were not identified in elderly patients with DM and hypertension. Areas covered: In this review article, the authors briefly discuss the pathophysiology of hypertension in elderly diabetics, present evidence with various antihypertensive drug classes supporting the treatment of hypertension to reduce CV events in older diabetics, and then discuss the optimal target BP goals in these patients. Expert opinion: Clinicians should have a BP goal of less than 130/80 mm in all elderly patients with hypertension and DM, especially in those with high CV-risk. When medications are required for optimal BP control in addition to lifestyle measures, either thiazide diuretics, angiotensin-converting-enzyme inhibitors, angiotensin receptor blockers, or calcium channel blockers should be considered as initial therapy. Combinations of medications are usually required in these patients because BP control is more difficult to achieve in diabetics than those without DM.

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