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Cardiovascular Pharmacology Concepts

Richard E. Klabunde, PhD

Clinical Disorders:

Therapeutic Classes:

Mechanism Classes:

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Cardiovascular Physiology Concepts 3e textbook cover

Click here for information on Cardiovascular Physiology Concepts, 3rd edition, a textbook published by Wolters Kluwer (2021)


Cardiovascular Physiology Concepts textbook cover

Click here for information on Normal and Abnormal Blood Pressure, a textbook published by Richard E. Klabunde (2013)


Systemic Hypertension cont.

Hypertension Categories

Several leading physician organizations, including the American Heart Association and the American College of Cardiology, published new guidelines in November 2017 for defining and treating hypertension. Based on large-scale clinical studies, the following definitions are now applied to adults:

Blood Pressure Categories in Adults (Current Guidelines)


Normal < 120 and < 80
Elevated 120 129 and < 80
   Stage 1 130 139 or 80  89
   Stage 2 ≥ 140 or  ≥ 90










It is important to note that a hypertensive state is defined as an abnormal elevation of either systolic or diastolic pressure. In past years, the diastolic value was emphasized in determining whether a person was hypertensive. However, elevations in systolic pressure ("systolic hypertension") are also associated with increased incidence of coronary and cerebrovascular disease (e.g., stroke). Therefore, we now recognize that both systolic and diastolic pressure values are important for assessing clinical states of hypertension.

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Causes of Hypertension

Revised 08/29/22

DISCLAIMER: These materials are for educational purposes only, and are not a source of medical decision-making advice.