Pulse pressure and vascular risk in the elderly: associations and clinical implications.
Pulse pressure provides information beyond systolic and diastolic blood pressures, from which it is calculated. The majority of individuals older than 70 years have a widened pulse pressure resulting from age-related stiffening of the central elastic arteries and systolic hypertension. A widened pulse pressure is associated with cardiovascular risk factors such as diabetes, hypertension, and smoking. It also predicts a higher risk of subsequent cardiovascular events, stroke, renal disease, heart failure, and mortality, particularly in the elderly. The authors review the mechanisms that contribute to pulse pressure and the association between pulse pressure, vascular risk factors, and outcomes.
Swaminathan, RV; Alexander, KP
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