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Strict blood pressure control ‘may be harmful’ in diabetes

Aggressive blood pressure control in patients with diabetes does not reduce mortality and could be harmful in some cases, warn UK researchers.

Data from more than 120,000 patients with newly diagnosed type 2 diabetes over 15 years found that controlling blood pressure to less than 130/80 mmHg was not associated with better survival rates, compared with those on less intensive treatment.

Researchers from Imperial College London and the University of Leicester, also found an almost three-fold increased risk of death from any cause in patients with systolic blood pressure of 110 mmHg, compared with those with a blood pressure of between 130-139/80-85 mmHg.

The study published in the BMJ, used data from patient records from 422 practices.

The researchers concluded: ‘It might be advisable to maintain blood pressure between 130-139/80-85 mm Hg, supported by other therapeutic and lifestyle interventions to improve cardiovascular outcomes in patients with diabetes.'