Noninvasive ambulatory blood pressure monitoring in patients with recently detected systemic hypertension
Noninvasive ambulatory blood pressure monitoring and Doppler echocardiography were used in a recent study evaluating persons aged 18 to 50 years who were initially found to have mild hypertension by casual blood pressure determination. Ambulatory blood pressure recordings were performed on a day of usual activity in 54 subjects; a subgroup of 24 patients had evaluation of left ventricular dimensions and diastolic filling patterns by Doppler echocardiography. Average ambulatory systolic pressures of 42% of subjects were greater than or equal to 130 mm Hg. Only 35% had average diastolic pressures greater than or equal to 85 mm Hg, and 57% had either systolic or diastolic pressures greater than or equal to 130/85 mm Hg. Correlation between casual and ambulatory pressures was not significant. No subject had left ventricular hypertrophy determined by echocardiography. Abnormal left ventricular diastolic filling was noted in 38% of those patients with average ambulatory pressures greater than or equal to 130/85 mm Hg, but in no patients with average pressures less than 130/85 mm Hg (p less than 0.05). These results suggest that ambulatory blood pressure monitoring may be a specific method for detecting those patients with mild hypertension who may have early and potentially reversible cardiac abnormalities.