Resistant hypertension: Comparing hemodynamic management to specialist care

Sandra J. Taler, Stephen C. Textor, Jo Ellen Augustine

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

229 Scopus citations


Although resistant hypertension affects a minority of all hypertensives, this group continues to experience disproportionately high cardiovascular event rates despite newer antihypertensive agents. Hypertension represents an imbalance of hemodynamic forces within the circulation, usually characterized by elevated systemic vascular resistance. We studied the utility of serial hemodynamic parameters in the selection and titration of antihypertensive medication in resistant hypertensive patients using highly reproducible noninvasive measurements by thoracic bioimpedance. Resistant hypertension patients (n = 104) were randomized to drug selection based either on serial hemodynamic (HD) measurements and a predefined algorithm or on drug selection directed by a hypertension specialist (SC) in a 3-month intensive treatment program. Blood pressure was lowered by intensified drug therapy in both treatment groups (169±3/87±2 to 139±2/72±1 mm Hg HD versus 173±3/91±2 to 147±2/79±1 mm Hg SC, P<0.01 for systolic and diastolic BP), using similar numbers and intensity of antihypertensive medications. Blood pressures were reduced further for those treated according to hemodynamic measurements, resulting in improved control rates (56% HD versus 33% SC controlled to ≤140/90 mm Hg, P<0.05) and incremental reduction in systemic vascular resistance measurements. Although the number of patients taking diuretics did not differ between groups, final diuretic dosage was higher in the hemodynamic cohort. Our results demonstrate superior blood pressure control using a treatment algorithm and serial hemodynamic measurements compared with clinical judgment alone in a randomized prospective study. Our measurements of thoracic fluid volume support occult volume expansion as a mediator of antihypertensive drug resistance and use of impedance measurements to guide advancing diuretic dose and adjustment of multidrug antihypertensive treatment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)982-988
Number of pages7
Issue number5
StatePublished - 2002


  • Cardiography
  • Drug therapy
  • Hemodynamics
  • Hypertension, resistant

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine


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