2012 consensus document of the Italian Society of Hypertension (SIIA): Strategies to improve blood pressure control in Italy: From global cardiovascular risk stratification to combination therapy

Massimo Volpe, Enrico Agabiti Rosei, Ettore Ambrosioni, Santina Cottone, Cesare Cuspidi, Claudio Borghi, Nicola De Luca, Francesco Fallo, Claudio Ferri, Alberto Morganti, Maria Lorenza Muiesan, Riccardo Sarzani, Leonardo Sechi, Agostino Virdis, Giuliano Tocci, Bruno Trimarco, Alessandro Filippi, Giuseppe Mancia

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Observational clinical studies have demonstrated that only 30-40 % of patients with arterial hypertension achieve the recommended blood pressure goals (below 140/90 mmHg). In contrast, interventional trials consistently showed that it is possible to achieve effective blood pressure targets in about 70 % of treated hypertensive patients with different cardiovascular risk profiles, especially through the use of rational, effective and well tolerated combination therapies. In order to bridge the gap between current and desired blood pressure control and to achieve more effective prevention of cardiovascular diseases, the Italian Society of Hypertension (SIIA) has developed an interventional strategy aimed at reaching nearly 70 % of treated controlled hypertensive patients by 2015. This ambitious goal can be realistically achieved by a more rational use of modern tools and supports, and also through the use of combination therapy in hypertension in daily clinical practice, especially if this approach can be simplified into a single pill (fixed combination therapy), which is a therapeutic option now also available in Italy. Since about 70-80 % of treated hypertensive patients require a combination therapy based on at least two classes of drugs in order to achieve the recommended blood pressure goals, it is of key importance to implement this strategy in routine clinical practice. Amongst the various combination therapies currently available for hypertension treatment and control, the use of those strategies based on drugs that antagonize the renin-angiotensin system, such as angiotensin II type 1 receptor antagonists (angiotensin receptor blockers) and ACE inhibitors, in combination with diuretics and/or calcium channel blockers, has been shown to significantly reduce the risk of major cardiovascular events and to improve patient compliance to treatment, resulting in a greater antihypertensive efficacy and better tolerability compared with monotherapy. The present document of the Italian Society of Arterial Hypertension (SIIA) aims to gather the main indications for the implementation of combination therapy in the treatment of hypertension, in order to improve blood pressure control in Italy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)45-52
Number of pages8
JournalHigh Blood Pressure and Cardiovascular Prevention
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2013



  • β-blockers
  • ACE inhibitors
  • Angiotensin receptor blockers
  • Arterial hypertension
  • Calcium channel antagonists
  • Combination therapy
  • Diuretics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Internal Medicine

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