Hypertension Home > Managing Isolated Systolic Hypertension

Treatment for Isolated Systolic Hypertension

Isolated systolic hypertension treatment options are the same as for other types of high blood pressure, in which both systolic and diastolic pressures are high. Isolated systolic hypertension is treated with lifestyle changes and/or blood pressure medications.
The key for any high blood pressure treatment is to bring the condition under proper control. Blood pressure should be less than 140/90 mmHg. If yours is not, ask your doctor why. You may just need a lifestyle or drug change, such as reducing salt in your diet or adding a second blood pressure medication.

Effects of Isolated Systolic Hypertension

Any type of high blood pressure -- including isolated systolic hypertension -- is dangerous if not properly treated. Both numbers in a blood pressure test are important, but for some, the systolic pressure is especially meaningful. That's because, for those persons middle-aged and older, systolic pressure gives a better diagnosis of high blood pressure.
If left uncontrolled, isolated systolic hypertension can lead to:
While it cannot be cured once it has developed, isolated systolic hypertension can be controlled. Clinical studies have proven that treating isolated systolic hypertension:
  • Saves lives
  • Greatly reduces illness
  • Improves the quality of life.
In spite of this, most Americans do not have their isolated systolic hypertension under control.

How Common Is Isolated Systolic Hypertension?

Isolated systolic hypertension is the most common form of high blood pressure for older Americans. For most Americans, systolic blood pressure increases with age, while diastolic pressure increases until about age 55 and then declines. About 65 percent of people with hypertension over age 60 have isolated systolic hypertension.
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Last reviewed by: Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
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