Leading hypertension experts Dr. Suzanne Oparil , MD, and Dr. Barry R Davis, MD, PhD, together with the leading ECG expert Dr. Elsayed Soliman, MD, joined Dr. Tereshchenko to discuss the risk of sudden cardiac death in hypertension.
In the United States, up to 450,000 people per year die suddenly; an average of 1 sudden death every 70 seconds. Systemic arterial hypertension is a major risk factor for sudden cardiac death and the increasing burden of hypertension is a worldwide problem. The lifetime risk of sudden cardiac death at 30 years of age is higher by 30% in individuals with hypertension. Each 20/10 mm Hg increase in systolic/diastolic blood pressure, is associated with a 20% additional increase in sudden cardiac death risk. Theoretically, antihypertensive treatment should be an effective strategy for sudden cardiac death prevention. However, a recent meta-analysis of 15 randomized controlled trials showed that antihypertensive treatment does not reduce the incidence of sudden cardiac death. Accepted in the Journal of Electrocardiology manuscript reviews ECG predictors of sudden cardiac death and the importance of risk stratification for appropriate management of hypertension.