Many With Hypertension Not Receiving Exercise Recommendations

One in five patients with hypertension reported that exercise was not recommended to them by their health care provider.

While both aerobic and resistance exercise have been associated with reduction in blood pressure (BP), one in five patients with hypertension reported that exercise was not recommended to them by their health care provider in a study published in the Journal of Human Hypertension.

Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) 2011 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System on 197,976 adults with hypertension were reviewed for reported frequency of physical activities. 

Respondents who reported at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity or at least 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity aerobic physical activity and resistance training  at least two times per week were considered to meet aerobic exercise and resistance guidelines.

Of the patients with hypertension, 77.5% were given advice to exercise by a health care provider; those who received this recommendation were twice as likely to report exercising for BP control. However, just under 15% of respondents who were advised to exercise met both aerobic and resistance exercise guidelines (33.3% met aerobic exercise guidelines only vs. 7.2% who met resistance exercise guidelines only). 

Advice to patients from a health care professional on improving eating habits, reducing salt and alcohol intake, or use of BP medication did not appear to impact the likelihood of the patient meeting exercise guidelines.

An accompanying commentary urges clinicians to assess whether or not they are consistently recommending exercise to patients with hypertension, and if patients who exercise are meeting the USPSTF Recommendations for Physical Activity.

Reference

  1. Mu L et al. J Hum Hypertens. 2015;29:394-395.
  2. Byrd JB. J Hum Hypertens. 2015;29:340-341.

This article originally appeared on MPR