Should All Older People Be On High Blood Pressure Pills?
Posted May 22 2009 8:29pm
A recent article published in the British Medical Journal concluded that all older people should be placed routinely on blood pressure lowering pills, regardless of whether or not they have high blood pressure. You can read a summary here.
It’s one thing to conclude that lowering blood pressure even incrementally has potential health benefits, but to say that all older people should be placed routinely on a cocktail of high blood pressure medications is going too far. Also, the fact that the authors have financial interest in what they’re recommending does not support their stance.
What they should be asking is what’s actually causing hypertension. One major cause that’s been proven but virtually ignored by the medical community is the presence of obstructive sleep apnea. It’s safe to say that most seniors will have some degree of obstructed breathing. Despite all that we know about the cause and effect relationship between hypertension and sleep apnea, 90% of people who have it are not diagnosed. Instead, they get treated for their hypertension, diabetes, depression, anxiety, weight gain, heart disease, heart attack and stroke.
Read the summary article and let me know your thoughts on this. Has research, in the name of science, gone too far?