Effects of Intensive Versus Standard Ambulatory Blood Pressure Control on Cerebrovascular Outcomes in Older People (INFINITY)

William B White, Dorothy B Wakefield, Nicola Moscufo, Charles R G Guttmann, Richard F Kaplan, Richard W Bohannon, Douglas Fellows, Charles B Hall, Leslie Wolfson
Circulation 2019 November 12, 140 (20): 1626-1635

BACKGROUND: Subcortical microvascular disease represented by brain white matter hyperintensity on magnetic resonance imaging is associated with functional decline in older people with hypertension. The effects of 2 levels of 24-hour average systolic blood pressure (BP) on mobility, white matter disease progression, and cognitive function over 3 years were studied.

METHODS: This trial was a prospective, randomized, blinded end-points study in patients ≥75 years of age with systolic hypertension and magnetic resonance imaging evidence of white matter hyperintensity lesions. Patients were randomized to a 24-hour mean systolic BP of ≤130 mm Hg (intensive treatment) versus ≤145 mm Hg (standard treatment) with antihypertensive therapies. Primary study outcomes were changes in mobility (gait speed) and accrual of white matter hyperintensity volume after 3 years. Changes in cognitive function (executive processing) and adverse events were also evaluated.

RESULTS: In 199 randomized patients, the mean age of the cohort was 80.5 years, and 54% were women; the average 24-hour systolic BP was 149 mm Hg. Goal BPs were achieved after a median treatment period of 3 to 4 months; at that time, the mean 24-hour systolic BP was 127.7 mm Hg in the intensive treatment group and 144.0 mm Hg in the standard treatment group for an average difference of 16.3 mm Hg. Changes in gait speed were not different between treatment groups (0.40±2.0 versus 0.42±2.7 s in the intensive treatment and standard treatment groups, respectively; P =0.91), whereas changes from baseline in white matter hyperintensity volumes were smaller (0.29%) in the intensive treatment group compared with the standard treatment group (0.48%; P =0.03). Cognitive outcomes also were not different between the treatment groups. Major adverse cardiovascular events were higher in the standard treatment group compared with the intensive treatment group (17 versus 4 patients; P =0.01). Falls, with or without injury, and syncope were comparable in the treatment groups.

CONCLUSIONS: Intensive lowering of ambulatory BP reduction in older patients with hypertension did not result in differences in mobility outcomes but was associated with a reduction in accrual of subcortical white matter disease. Over periods >3 years, a reduction in the accumulation of white matter disease may be a factor in conserving function.

CLINICAL TRIAL REGISTRATION: URL: Unique identifier: NCT01650402.


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