Journal Mobile

CDR Pengelly, J Morris
Journal Issue: 
Volume 42: Issue 3: 2012



Background: The prevalence of hypertension in a population is the sum of those individuals with a blood pressure (BP) exceeding 140/90 mm Hg plus those with normal BP on antihypertensive therapy (this is usually about 20–30% of the population). Rest normally reduces BP but the frequency and extent of the fall remains unclear.

Methods: This study analysed the results of 1,008 consecutive life assurance examinations in which BP was recorded twice, before and after a ten minute period of recumbent rest.

Results: Two hundred and twelve subjects had initial BPs of more than 140/90 mm Hg (21%). When all those receiving antihypertensive treatment but with normal BPs were included, this was 26.5%. Of the 212 subjects, BP was at a normal level in 147 (69%) after ten minutes at rest.

Conclusion: BP measurement after a ten minute period of standardised rest could more accurately identify true hypertension.