Medication to treat high blood pressure associated with fall injuries in elderly

February 24, 2014

Medication to treat high blood pressure (BP) in older patients appears to be associated with an increased risk for serious injury from falling such as a hip fracture or head injury, especially in older patients who have been injured in previous falls.

Most people older than 70 years have , and is key to reducing risk for myocardial infarction (MI, heart attack) and stroke. Previous research has suggested that medications may increase risk of falls and fall injuries.

Researchers examined the association between BP medication use and experiencing a serious injury from a fall in 4,961 patients older than 70 years with hypertension. Among the patients, 14.1 percent took no antihypertensive medications, 54.6 percent had moderate exposure to BP medications and 31.3 percent had high exposure.

During a three-year follow-up, 446 patients (9 percent) experienced serious injuries from falls. The risk for serious injuries from falls was higher for patients who used antihypertensive medication than for nonusers and even higher for patients who had had a previous fall injury.

"Although cause and effect cannot be established in this observational study and we cannot exclude confounding, antihypertensive medications seemed to be associated with an increased risk of serious fall injury compared with no antihypertensive use in this nationally representative cohort of , particularly among participants with a previous fall injury. The potential harms vs. benefits of antihypertensive medications should be weighed in deciding whether to continue antihypertensives in older adults with multiple chronic conditions."

Explore further: Study points out inequalities in prescribing blood pressure meds

More information: JAMA Intern Med. Published online February 24, 2014. DOI: 10.1001/jamainternmed.2013.14764

Related Stories

Study points out inequalities in prescribing blood pressure meds

February 18, 2014
Primary care doctors are not quick to prescribe antihypertensive medication to young people even after an average of 20 months of high blood pressure. Young adults who are white, male, not on Medicaid and not frequent clinic ...

Risk of hospitalized fall injury up for seniors with diabetes

November 20, 2013
(HealthDay)—Older adults with diabetes, especially those treated with insulin, are at increased risk of injurious falls requiring hospitalization, according to a study published online Oct. 15 in Diabetes Care.

85 percent of heart attacks after surgery go undetected due to lack of symptoms

February 18, 2014
Without administering a simple blood test in the first few days after surgery, 85 percent of the heart attacks or injuries patients suffer could be missed, according to a study in the March issue of Anesthesiology. Globally, ...

Effect of reducing blood pressure with medications immediately following ischemic stroke

November 17, 2013
Jiang He, M.D., Ph.D., of the Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, New Orleans, and colleagues examined whether moderate lowering of blood pressure within the first 48 hours after the onset of ...

Blood pressure medications given right after stroke not beneficial, study finds

February 19, 2014
A major study has found that giving stroke patients medications to lower their blood pressure during the first 48 hours after a stroke does not reduce the likelihood of death or major disability.

Greatly increased risk of stroke for patients who don't adhere to anti-hypertensive medication

July 16, 2013
People with high blood pressure, who don't take their anti-hypertensive drug treatments when they should, have a greatly increased risk of suffering a stroke and dying from it compared to those who take their medication correctly.

Recommended for you

High-fat diet in pregnancy can cause mental health problems in offspring

July 21, 2017
A high-fat diet not only creates health problems for expectant mothers, but new research in an animal model suggests it alters the development of the brain and endocrine system of their offspring and has a long-term impact ...

To combat teen smoking, health experts recommend R ratings for movies that depict tobacco use

July 21, 2017
Public health experts have an unusual suggestion for reducing teen smoking: Give just about any movie that depicts tobacco use an automatic R rating.

Why sugary drinks and protein-rich meals don't go well together

July 20, 2017
Having a sugar-sweetened drink with a high-protein meal may negatively affect energy balance, alter food preferences and cause the body to store more fat, according to a study published in the open access journal BMC Nutrition.

Opioids and obesity, not 'despair deaths,' raising mortality rates for white Americans

July 20, 2017
Drug-related deaths among middle-aged white men increased more than 25-fold between 1980 and 2014, with the bulk of that spike occurring since the mid-1990s when addictive prescription opioids became broadly available, according ...

Aging Americans enjoy longer life, better health when avoiding three risky behaviors

July 20, 2017
We've heard it before from our doctors and other health experts: Keep your weight down, don't smoke and cut back on the alcohol if you want to live longer.

Parents have critical role in preventing teen drinking

July 20, 2017
Fewer teenagers are drinking alcohol but more needs to be done to curb the drinking habits of Australian school students, based on the findings of the latest study by Adelaide researchers.

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.