In an editorial published in Annals of Internal Medicine, experts express concern about the way SPRINT (Systolic Blood Pressure Intervention Trial) findings were presented to the public.
The authors say that press releases used to promote the study findings focused solely on the benefits of intensive treatment, while ignoring the harms. This approach could lead patients to expect greater benefits from treatment than physicians can justify with daily use of antihypertensive medications. Unconvinced by SPRINT evidence, the experts caution against medicating large segments of the population to achieve more aggressive blood pressure targets, especially when the adverse events, costs, and burden of such treatment are considered.
Article: Let’s Not SPRINT to Judgment About New Blood Pressure Goals, Eduardo Ortiz, MD, MPH; and Paul A. James, MD, Annals of Internal Medicine, doi:10.7326/M15-3123, published online 23 February 2016.