How are hypertensive children evaluated and managed? A survey of North American pediatric nephrologists
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- Woroniecki, R.P. & Flynn, J.T. Pediatr Nephrol (2005) 20: 791. doi:10.1007/s00467-004-1804-6
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To assess how children with hypertension are currently evaluated and managed, we surveyed 438 North American pediatric nephrologists on how they measure blood pressure (BP), BP goals used in pharmacologically treated patients, and antihypertensive drug choices. 190 replies were received (43% response rate), and 185 were analyzable. Oscillometric and aneroid sphygmomanometers were the most commonly used devices for office BP measurement (74.8% of respondents). Ambulatory blood pressure monitoring was used by 63% of respondents. Goal BP in pharmacologically treated patients was set at the 95th percentile by 39% of respondents, and at the 90th percentile by 59%. Only 37% used a different goal BP in children with hypertension and renal disease; of these, 85% used a lower goal and 15% a higher goal. For hypertensive children with diabetes, 47% used a different goal; 99% lower and 1% higher. Whereas angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors (ACEI) and calcium-channel blockers (CCB) were chosen by similar proportions of respondents as initial agents for treatment of primary hypertension, most (84%) chose ACEI as their initial agent for hypertension in children with renal disease.
Although most pediatric nephrologists treat hypertensive children to a BP goal below the 90th percentile, most do not use lower goals for patients with renal disease or diabetes, in contrast with current recommendations for treatment of adults with these conditions. These findings highlight the need for further studies to determine whether recommendations for treatment of hypertension in adults should be followed in children.