Main Article Content
Aims. To examine prescribing habits and blood pressure control in a hospital day clinic population receiving calcium channel blockers.
Setting. King Edward VIII Hospital day clinic, Durban, KwaZulu-Natal.
Patients. 200 consecutive patients receiving a regimen containing calcium channel blockers. 190 patients with evaluable data.
Method. Automated non-invasive Dinamap recording) of blood pressure.
Results. Only 27% of patients had a blood pressure under 140/90 mm/Hg. Control was unsatisfactory in 53% of patients (blood pressure > 160/95 mmHg), despite the fact that they were attending a hospital-based day clinic. At least 2 agents were used in 93% of patients. Diuretics (62%) and angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors (59%) were the most frequently prescribed agents in addition to calcium channel blockers. Subjective side-effects were few and related to vasodilator therapy.
Conclusion. The study supports findings worldwide that blood pressure control tends to be poor. Several reasons for poor control were noted. The results raise many important questions regarding management of hypertension .