Kidney Disease + High Blood Pressure=Cardiovascular + Kidney Damage

New York, NY
May 15, 2003

Fifty million Americans suffering from high blood pressure will get the roadmap they need this week in the JNC-VII guidelines for treatment released by the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute. According to the National Kidney Foundation (NKF) and the American Society of Nephrology (ASN), if you have high blood pressure along with kidney disease you need specialized treatment in order to prevent cardiovascular disease, and minimize the progression of kidney disease. The two kidney groups say that all high blood pressure is not the same and cannot be managed the same way. Many patients with kidney disease die of cardiovascular disease and high blood pressure is a reversible cause of cardiovascular disease. Chronic kidney disease affects 20 million Americans and thirty five percent of all new cases are caused by high blood pressure.

When high blood pressure is combined with kidney disease, the treatment also needs to be a combination of drugs. Pointing to the JNC-VII guidelines, the NKF and ASN offer these important tips for managing high blood pressure in those with kidney disease:

  • Keep your blood pressure below 130/80
  • To get to that target blood pressure, you will probably need more than one blood pressure medication. A combination of ACE inhibitors or angiotensin receptor blockers with diuretics are preferred drugs for patients with kidney disease.
  • Lifestyle changes such as losing weight, stopping smoking and reducing salt intake are especially important for people who have kidney disease and high blood pressure.

For more information contact the National Kidney Foundation at (800) 622-9010 or the American Society of Nephrology at (202) 659-0599.