The mechanisms for hypertension in elderly persons are still unclear. The major effects of normal aging on the cardiovascular system involve alterations of the aorta and of the systemic vasculature. Aortic and large-artery wall thickness increases and vessel elasticity decreases with age.Author:
Anne-Sophie Rigaud, Bernard ForetteCited by:
Research has indicated that blood vessels naturally ‘harden’ with age, losing their elasticity. This may be one explanation for why older people are more at risk of developing high blood pressure.
Angiotensin Receptor Blockers ARBs are considered the alternative first-line treatment for hypertension in the elderly population when a diuretic is contraindicated. In elderly hypertensive patients with diabetes or HF, ARBs are considered first-line treatment and an alternative to ACE inhibitors.
High blood pressure is now generally defined as 130 or higher for the first number, or 80 or higher for the second number (previously it was 140/90).
Elderly Blood Pressure Range for Men and Women
|Blood Pressure Category for Adults 65+||Systolic mm Hg||Diastolic mm Hg|
|Normal blood pressure||Lower than 120||Lower than 80|
|Elevated blood pressure||120 – 129||Lower than 80|
|High blood pressure stage 1||130 – 139||80 – 89|
|High blood pressure stage 2||140 or higher||90 or higher|
Your blood pressure is considered high (stage 1) if it reads 140/90. Stage 2 high blood pressure is 160 / 100 or higher. If you get a blood pressure reading of 180/110 or higher more than once, seek medical treatment right away. A reading this high is considered “hypertensive crisis.”
As you can see from the paragraph above, if your blood pressure is significantly elevated (> 150 / 100 mmHg) it is very unlikely that diet and lifestyle changes alone will be enough to bring your blood pressure in a range that will reduce your risk or heart attacks, strokes, or early death. You need medications.
6 Outdated High Blood Pressure Medications You Should Consider Upgrading Atenolol. Furosemide (Lasix) Nifedipine (Adalat, Procardia) Terazosin (Hytrin) and Prazosin (Minipress) Hydralazine (Apresoline) Clonidine (Catapres)
These medications include the ACE inhibitors and the angiotensin II receptor blockers . Reserpine may also be harmful during pregnancy and should only be used when no other alternatives exist. Safe medications to use include methyldopa and potentially some diuretics and beta blockers , including labetalol .
The Eighth Joint National Committee (JNC 8) issued new blood pressure guidelines for seniors in 2014 recommending that individuals over age 60 aim for a reading below 150/90 mmHg. The JNC 8 recommendation for patients of any age with diabetes or chronic kidney disease is to aim for BP readings below 140/90 mmHg.
A hypertensive crisis is a severe increase in blood pressure that can lead to a stroke. Extremely high blood pressure — a top number (systolic pressure) of 180 millimeters of mercury (mm Hg) or higher or a bottom number (diastolic pressure) of 120 mm Hg or higher — can damage blood vessels.
When treating hypertension in patients over the age of 85 years , the usual target blood pressure is 150/80 mmHg for reduction of the risk of stroke, heart attack, and other cardiovascular events.
7 Drinks for Lowering Blood Pressure Tomato juice . Growing evidence suggests that drinking one glass of tomato juice per day may promote heart health. Beet juice . Prune juice . Pomegranate juice . Berry juice . Skim milk . Tea .
As a general guide: high blood pressure is considered to be 140/90mmHg or higher (or 150/90mmHg or higher if you’re over the age of 80) ideal blood pressure is usually considered to be between 90/60mmHg and 120/80mmHg.
The new guidelines change nothing if you’re younger than 60. But if you’re 60 or older, the target has moved up: Your goal is to keep your blood pressure at 150/90 or lower. If you have kidney disease or diabetes , your target used to be 130/80 or lower; now it’s 140/90 or lower.
High blood pressure can be: just a high systolic pressure , for example, 170 / 70 mmHg. just a high diastolic pressure , for example, 130/104 mmHg. ● or both, for example, 170 /110 mmHg.