MCG faculty contribute to textbooks on geriatric, pediatric hypertension

Dr. L. Michael Prisant, cardiologist and hypertension expert who directs the Hypertension and Clinical Pharmacology Unit at the Medical College of Georgia, is editor of the new textbook, "Hypertension in the Elderly."

Ten other MCG faculty members helped write chapters for the comprehensive reference for family physicians and general internists on the diagnosis, treatment and complications of hypertension in the elderly. "Two-thirds of elderly patients have high blood pressure," says Dr. Prisant. "The thing that will surprise you is that most of those folks do not have their blood pressure under control."

Three MCG faculty members and a research manager also have contributed to the first textbook on "Pediatric Hypertension," which provides practitioners an overview of this increasing health problem in children and practical management advice. Hypertension now follows obesity and asthma as the most common chronic diseases in children.

"The prevalence of hypertension in children is going up tremendously in the U.S. and all over the world," Dr. Gregory Harshfield, hypertension researcher and associate director of the MCG Georgia Prevention Institute, says of the condition in which genetics and lifestyle play a role in children as well as adults. "If you look at the whole population, the prevalence was about 1 percent 15 years ago. Today if you look again at the whole population, it's still no more than 2 or 3 percent," he says. But in at-risk populations such as Hispanic Americans and blacks, it's more like 7 percent, with increasing obesity rates contributing mightily, he says. The first book on hypertensive children explores issues such as risk factors and assessment.

Dr. Harshfield and MCG Research Manager Martha E. Wilson authored a chapter on Ethnic Differences in Childhood Blood Pressure. Dr. Frank A. Treiber, director of the Georgia Prevention Institute, and Dr. Harold Snieder, genetic epidemiologist, wrote Cardiovascular Reactivi

Contact: Toni Baker
Medical College of Georgia

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