At the clinical interface little seems to be new in the area of hypertension. Non-pharmacological strategies have been unchanged for decades and there have been no new drug therapies since the advent of the angiotensin receptor blocker class in the mid to late 1990s. However, much has changed in the past few years with regard to our understanding of the genetics of hypertension, the underlying pathophysiology of the condition and recognition of hypertension as the main risk factor driving cardiovascular morbidity globally. Furthermore, a number of new classes of agents are being developed and indeed (the renin inhibitor class) have been approved in a number of countries outside Australia. For all of these reasons a comprehensive update on new developments in hypertension, anchored by sections on the fundamentals of knowledge regarding this condition, is clearly warranted.
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