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Logo of brjgenpracRCGP homepageJ R Coll Gen Pract at PubMed CentralBJGP at RCGPBJGP at RCGP
Br J Gen Pract. 2006 May 1; 56(526): 375–377.
PMCID: PMC1837847

Assessing blood pressure control in patients treated for hypertension: comparing different measurements and targets

Gillian Manning, PhD, Lecturer
School of Medical & Surgical Sciences, The University of Nottingham, Nottingham
Andrew Brooks, MRCP, GP and Barbara Slinn, SRN, Practice Nurse
Lister House Surgery and Oakwood Medical Centre, Derby
Michael W Millar-Craig, MD, FRCP, Consultant Cardiologist
Derby Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Derby
Richard Donnelly, PhD, MD, FRCP, FRACP, Professor of Vascular Medicine


We examined how different methods and definitions of blood pressure affect the achievement of targets in general practice. There was a wide range in the proportion of treated patients achieving the different target levels recommended by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence, British Hypertension Society and the general medical services contract. Among non-diabetic patients this ranged from; 10–37% (average office), 15–39% (standardised nurse measurement), 11–49% (last recorded) and 31–56% (ambulatory blood pressure). Defining targets without a clear definition of how blood pressure should be measured is largely meaningless and ignoring ambulatory blood pressure results in many patients being classified incorrectly as failing to achieve targets.

Keywords: blood pressure control, guidelines, hypertension

Articles from The British Journal of General Practice are provided here courtesy of Royal College of General Practitioners