Monday, December 19, 2005

Expensive blood pressure meds no better for kidneys

For years, experts have claimed that relatively expensive blood pressure drugs such as ACE inhibitors offer special protection against kidney disease.

But a new British study suggests that's not the case -- that the drugs' benefit to kidneys comes only from their ability to reduce blood pressure. They also believe that cheaper antihypertensive medications might work just as well.

Another blow to those practitioners who allow their patients to walk around with high blood pressure, no matter what method they use to medicate. It's time that healthcare providers and their patients take hypertension seriously. Yes, I know it's hard to focus on what is essentially a silent disease, but let's get on with it.

And, don't forget to get a good blood pressure cuff for home use:

Self-monitoring of blood pressure at home leads to better control over high blood pressure than does standard monitoring at the doctor's office, according to a report in the American Journal of Hypertension.

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