Variability in blood pressure predicts cardiovascular disease in young- and middle-aged subjects, but relevant data for older individuals are sparse. We analysed data from the PROspective Study of Pravastatin in the Elderly at Risk (PROSPER) study of 5804 participants aged 70–82 years with a history of, or risk factors for cardiovascular disease. Visit-to-visit variability in blood pressure (standard deviation) was determined using a minimum of five measurements over 1 year; an inception cohort of 4819 subjects had subsequent in-trial 3 years follow-up; longer-term follow-up (mean 7.1 years) was available for 1808 subjects. Higher systolic blood pressure variability independently predicted long-term follow-up vascular and total mortality (hazard ratio per 5 mmHg increase in standard deviation of systolic blood pressure = 1.2, 95% confidence interval 1.1–1.4; hazard ratio 1.1, 95% confidence interval 1.1–1.2, respectively). Variability in diastolic blood pressure associated with increased risk for coronary events (hazard ratio 1.5, 95% confidence interval 1.2–1.8 for each 5 mmHg increase), heart failure hospitalisation (hazard ratio 1.4, 95% confidence interval 1.1–1.8) and vascular (hazard ratio 1.4, 95% confidence interval 1.1–1.7) and total mortality (hazard ratio 1.3, 95% confidence interval 1.1–1.5), all in long-term follow-up. Pulse pressure variability was associated with increased stroke risk (hazard ratio 1.2, 95% confidence interval 1.0–1.4 for each 5 mmHg increase), vascular mortality (hazard ratio 1.2, 95% confidence interval 1.0–1.3) and total mortality (hazard ratio 1.1, 95% confidence interval 1.0–1.2), all in long-term follow-up. All associations were independent of respective mean blood pressure levels, age, gender, in-trial treatment group (pravastatin or placebo) and prior vascular disease and cardiovascular disease risk factors. Our observations suggest variability in diastolic blood pressure is more strongly associated with vascular or total mortality than is systolic pressure variability in older high-risk subjects.
Publisher: Public Library of Science
Date Published: 20-December-2012
Author(s): Poortvliet R., Ford I., Lloyd S., Sattar N., Mooijaart S., de Craen A., Westendorp R., Jukema J., Packard C., Gussekloo J., de Ruijter W., Stott D.