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High Blood Pressure Reasons Differ by Gender in Young Adults
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There are marked gender differences in what drives blood pressure in middle-age in adulthood, suggesting the need for gender-specific treatments for high blood pressure, according to research presented today at the American Heart Association (AHA) Council on Hypertension, AHA Council on Kidney in Cardiovascular Disease, American Society of Hypertension Joint Scientific Sessions 2017, in San Francisco.
Key TakeawayFor young and middle-aged women, stroke volume was the main determinant of blood pressure, while, in men, vascular resistance was the main determinant of blood pressure." Syme and colleagues studied 1,347 Canadians from the Saguenay Youth Study, including 911 adolescents and 426 adults ages 36 to 65 years. The researchers used a device that measures beat-by-beat blood pressure and the underlying forces of heart rate, stroke volume and total peripheral resistance. In the approximately hour-long protocol, they measured these variables at rest, and during posture changes and a mental stressor -- all designed to mimic daily life activities, according to Syme.
- In females, stroke volume explains 55 percent of the variance in systolic blood pressure (the top number in a blood pressure reading), versus only 35 percent in males.
- In males, the major determinant of systolic blood pressure was total peripheral resistance, which explained 47 percent of the variance, versus only 30 percent in females.
- These gender differences were seen across most of the 52-minute protocol, being most prominent during standing and least evident during mental stress, according to the abstract.