Picking right blood pressure medicine challenging

(Associated Press) — It’s hard to predict which pills will best lower which patient’s high blood pressure, but researchers are hunting ways to better personalize therapy — perhaps even using a blood test.

The work is controversial, challenging today’s usual approach to treating the hypertension that plagues nearly one in three U.S. adults.

Now a trio of studies shows some drug combinations work better for certain populations — and raises the possibility that measuring blood levels of a hormone involved in hypertension might help optimize some people’s care.

The big surprise: Taking a drug that’s a poor match to that hormone level may not just fail to work, it sometimes can trigger a jump in blood pressure.

“The idea that one size fits all doesn’t make a lot of sense,” says Dr. Michael Alderman of New York’s Albert Einstein College of Medicine, who supports the blood test approach.


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