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      Blood pressure control and cardiovascular risk profile in hypertensive patients from central and eastern European countries: results of the BP-CARE study.

      European Heart Journal
      Aged, Albuminuria, etiology, Antihypertensive Agents, therapeutic use, Cardiovascular Diseases, epidemiology, Cross-Sectional Studies, Drug Therapy, Combination, Electrocardiography, Ambulatory, Europe, Europe, Eastern, Female, Humans, Hypertension, prevention & control, Male, Middle Aged, Risk Assessment, Risk Factors

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          Limited information is available on office and ambulatory blood pressure (BP) control as well as on cardiovascular (CV) risk profile in treated hypertensive patients living in central and eastern European countries. In 2008, a survey on 7860 treated hypertensive patients followed by non-specialist or specialist physicians was carried out in nine central and eastern European countries (Albania, Belarus, Bosnia, Czech Republic, Latvia, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, and Ukraine). Cardiovascular risk assessment was based on personal history, clinic BP values, as well as target organ damage evaluation. Patients had a mean (±SD) age of 60.1 ± 11 years, and the majority of them (83.5%) were followed by specialists. Average clinic BP was 149.3 ± 17/88.8 ± 11 mmHg. About 70% of patients displayed a very high-risk profile. Electrocardiogram was performed in 99% of patients, echocardiography in 65%, carotid ultrasound in 24%, fundoscopy in 68%, and search for microalbuminuria in 10%. Ambulatory BP monitoring was performed in about one-fifth of the recruited patients. Despite the widespread use of combination treatment (87% of the patients), office BP control (<140/90 mmHg) was achieved in 27.1% only, the corresponding control rate for ambulatory BP (<130/80 mmHg) being 35.7%. Blood pressure control was (i) variable among different countries, (ii) worse for systolic than for diastolic BP, (iii) slightly better in patients followed by specialists than by non-specialists, (iv) unrelated to patients' age, and (v) more unsatisfactory in high-risk hypertensives and in patients with coronary heart disease, stroke, or renal failure. These data provide evidence that in central and eastern European countries office and ambulatory BP control are unsatisfactory, particularly in patients at very high CV risk, and not differ from that seen in Western Europe. They also show that assessment of subclinical organ damage is quite common, except for microalbuminuria, and that combination drug treatment is frequently used.

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