BP Variability Does More Damage than Hypertension Alone

Dr Bobby Lazzara reviews a new study that suggests reducing fluctuations in blood pressure in older adults could help prevent loss of cognitive function and verbal memory.

In this Medical News Minute, developed exclusively for Consultantlive.com, Dr Bobby Lazzara reviews an important study that tested the hypothesis that higher visit-to-visit variability in BP, but not mean BP, would be associated with cognitive decline in older adults. The results did find that inter-visit variability in both systolic and diastolic BP, independent of mean values for either measure, was associated with decline in cognitive function and verbal memory. Interestingly, variability in diastolic pressure from visit-to-visit was associated with cognitive decline in subjects aged 55 to 64 but not in those ≥65 years.

Source: Qin B, Viera AJ, Muntner PL, et al. Visit-to-visit variability in blood pressure is related to late-life cognitive decline. Hypertension. 2016;68:106-113, published online before print May 23 2016, doi:10.1161/HYPERTENSIONAHA.116.07494