White Coat Hypertension: to Treat or Not to Treat?

Cesare Cuspidi, Carla Sala, Guido Grassi, Giuseppe Mancia

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Definition of white coat hypertension (WCH) traditionally relies on elevated office blood pressure (BP) during repeated visits concomitant with normal out-of-office BP values, as assessed by home and/or 24-h ambulatory BP monitoring measurements. Accumulating evidence focusing on the association of WCH with target organ damage and, more importantly, with cardiovascular events indicates that the risk conveyed by this condition is intermediate between normotension and sustained hypertension. This article will review a number of issues concerning WCH with particular emphasis on the following: (1) prevalence and clinical correlates, (2) association with target organ damage and cardiovascular events, (3) therapeutic interventions. Data will refer to the original WCH definition, based on out-of-office BP determined by 24-h ambulatory BP monitoring; at variance from home BP measurement, this approach rules out the potentially confounding effect of a clinically relevant abnormal BP phenotype such as isolated nocturnal hypertension.

Original languageEnglish
Article number80
JournalCurrent Hypertension Reports
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - Nov 1 2016


  • Cardiovascular prognosis
  • Organ damage
  • Treatment
  • White coat hypertension

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine


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