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Many research studies are under way to understand the causes of high blood pressure (hypertension). These studies are designed to answer important questions and to find out whether new approaches are safe and effective. Researchers are also studying new blood pressure medicines and combinations of blood pressure medicines in order to continue to improve treatment for high blood pressure.

An Overview of Hypertension Research

Doctors and scientists are hard at work conducting research on hypertension. Hypertension research studies are designed to answer important questions and to find out whether new treatment approaches are safe and effective. This research already has led to many advances, and researchers continue to search for new methods for dealing with hypertension.
 

Current Areas of Focus

Many research studies are under way to understand the cause or causes of high blood pressure. In 90 percent of cases, the cause of high blood pressure is not known (this is called essential or primary hypertension).
 
Other research scientists are studying new blood pressure medicines and combinations of blood pressure medicines in order to continue to improve treatment for high blood pressure.
 
Research studies on hypertension are also looking at the genetics of the disease. The potential benefits of a genetic approach to study hypertension are promising and include:
 
  • Early detection
  • Targeted prevention
  • Targeted treatment of the disease.
     
Between 21 percent and 66 percent of people with high blood pressure stop taking their blood pressure medication for reasons such as:
 
  • Complexity of regimen
  • Undesired side effects
  • Misperception of the disease
  • Lack of motivation to comply.
     
Researchers are continuing to study treatment and psychosocial factors that affect poor compliance with high blood pressure treatment recommendations.
 
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
Last updated/reviewed:
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