Current Hypertension Reports

, Volume 7, Issue 5, pp 330-336

First online:

Management of hypertension in overweight and obese patients: A practical guide for clinicians

  • Francesco DentaliAffiliated withSt. Joseph’s Hospital
  • , Arya M. SharmaAffiliated withSt. Joseph’s Hospital
  • , James D. DouketisAffiliated withSt. Joseph’s Hospital

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The association between obesity and cardiovascular disease is well established, and up to 60% of overweight or obese patients have hypertension. Dietary interventions associated with modest weight loss are effective in controlling blood pressure and in reducing use of antihypertensive drug therapy in overweight and obese patients. However, long-term maintenance of weight loss is achieved only in a small proportion of patients. Orlistat and sibutramine may help to achieve and maintain weight loss but may not be sufficient to control blood pressure in overweight and obese hypertensive patients. Consequently, antihypertensive drug therapy is often necessary in addition to weight loss interventions. Few studies have investigated different antihypertensive drugs, specifically in overweight and obese patients with hypertension. Based on studies involving obese and nonobese patients, first-line treatment options include a diuretic alone or an angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitor alone. If monotherapy is inadequate for blood pressure control, combination therapy with diuretic and ACE inhibitor and/or combining either of these drugs with a calcium channel blocker are reasonable treatment options. Additional studies to further clarify the management of these patients are warranted.