Prehypertension Tied to Higher Risk of Incident Stroke

Individuals with higher prehypertensive values show substantial increase in stroke risk

THURSDAY, Sept. 29 (HealthDay News) -- Individuals with prehypertension are at significant risk of incident stroke, with the risk increasing substantially among those with higher prehypertensive values, according to a meta-analysis published online Sept. 28 in Neurology.

M. Lee, M.D., from the University of California in Los Angeles, and colleagues reviewed the available literature to investigate the qualitative and quantitative association between prehypertension and incident stroke. A total of 12 studies involving 518,520 individuals, which reported the multivariate adjusted relative risks (RRs) and corresponding 95 percent confidence intervals of stroke with regard to baseline prehypertension, were analyzed.

The investigators identified a significant association between prehypertension and risk of stroke (RR, 1.55). Seven studies distinguished populations with low prehypertension (systolic blood pressure [SBP], 120 to 129 mm Hg; or diastolic blood pressure [DBP], 80 to 84 mm Hg) from populations with high prehypertension (SBP, 130 to 139 mm Hg; or DBP, 85 to 89 mm Hg). The risk of stroke did not significantly increase in individuals with lower-range prehypertension. There was a substantial and significant increase in the risk of stroke for individuals in the higher-range prehypertension group (RR, 1.79).

"Prehypertension is associated with a higher risk of incident stroke. This risk is largely driven by higher values within the prehypertensive range and is especially relevant in non-elderly persons," the authors write.

One of the study authors disclosed financial relationships with the biotherapeutic, biotechnology, and medical device industries.

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