Blood pressure, antihypertensive drugs, and incident frailty: The Multidomain Alzheimer Preventive Trial (MAPT)

Maturitas. 2022 Aug;162:8-14. doi: 10.1016/j.maturitas.2022.03.001. Epub 2022 Mar 15.


Objectives: To examine the association of (1) high and low blood pressure (BP) and (2) antihypertensive (AH) drug use with incident frailty.

Study design: We conducted a secondary analysis of data from the Multidomain Alzheimer Preventive Trial (MAPT), in which 1394 non-frail community-dwelling participants aged ≥70 years were followed up for 5 years. BP was measured once at baseline in a lying position using a validated electronic device. High BP was defined as systolic BP ≥ 140 mm Hg and/or diastolic BP ≥ 90 mm Hg, and low BP as systolic BP ≤ 110 mm Hg and/or diastolic BP ≤ 70 mm Hg. AH drugs were assessed at baseline and classified according to the Anatomical Therapeutic Chemical (ATC) code.

Main outcome measures: Incident frailty over the 5 years was assessed using the Fried phenotype. Cox proportional hazards models were used for the analyses.

Results: Low BP was associated with a greater risk of frailty (HR = 1.43, 95% CI [1.07-1.92], p = 0.02) after adjustment for age, sex, education, AH drug use, BMI, diabetes, ischemic heart disease, congestive heart failure, AF, stroke, MAPT randomization group, sit-to-stand chair test and pre-frailty. Participants with low BP and those on two or more AH drugs were at the greatest risk of frailty. Neither high BP (HR = 0.84, 95% CI [0.63-1.22], p = 0.24) nor AH drug use (HR = 1.21, 95% CI [0.89-1.64], p = 0.22) was independently associated with incident frailty.

Conclusions: Low BP could be used as a new marker for identifying older adults at higher risk of frailty.

Clinicaltrials: gov registration number: NCT00672685.

Keywords: Antihypertensive drugs; Blood pressure; Frailty.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Alzheimer Disease* / drug therapy
  • Alzheimer Disease* / prevention & control
  • Antihypertensive Agents / therapeutic use
  • Blood Pressure
  • Frailty* / prevention & control
  • Humans
  • Hypertension* / complications
  • Hypertension* / drug therapy
  • tau Proteins / pharmacology
  • tau Proteins / therapeutic use


  • Antihypertensive Agents
  • MAPT protein, human
  • tau Proteins

Associated data