Intended for healthcare professionals


Treating hypertension in elderly people

BMJ 1996; 313 doi: (Published 07 December 1996) Cite this as: BMJ 1996;313:1482

Statistics cannot eliminate weaknesses in study design

  1. Mikael Hoffmann,
  2. Johan Ahlner
  1. Consultant Associate professor Department of Clinical Pharmacology, University Hospital, S-581 85 Linkoping, Sweden

    EDITOR,—The main question studied by Juan Merlo and colleagues was: Did treatment of hypertension in elderly men (whose blood pressure was measured at one examination in 1982–3 and was classified as being</=90 mm Hg or >90 mm Hg) lead to more ischaemic cardiac events during follow up of 10 years?1 In the study hypertension was treated as a point exposure. With a complex health disorder such as hypertension, in which the time from the onset of an increase in blood pressure to diagnosis and treatment varies, such an approach …

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