Pharmacological management of hypertension in paediatric patients. A comprehensive review of the efficacy, safety and dosage guidelines of the available agents

Drugs. 1994 Dec;48(6):868-87. doi: 10.2165/00003495-199448060-00004.


The prevalence of hypertension in children, although lower than in adults, is still significant. An underlying cause is often identified in the younger patient, with essential hypertension accounting for the majority of cases in adolescents. The natural history of hypertension in childhood is still not well delineated. Previous Task Force recommendations are addressed to reflect current experience with the newer classes of agents, namely the angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors and the calcium channel blockers (CCBs) where either limited or no experience was previously available. In addition, the current treatment recommendations of Joint National Committee V (JNCV) are reflected in our discussion. The current drug classes are reviewed with respect to dosage guidelines, adverse effects and potential drug-drug interactions. The advantages and disadvantages of a tailored or individualised therapeutic approach as opposed to rigid stepped care therapy will be presented. Clearly, more long term data need to be obtained with respect to the safety and efficacy of the newer classes of drugs.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adrenergic alpha-Agonists / therapeutic use
  • Adrenergic alpha-Antagonists / therapeutic use
  • Adrenergic beta-Antagonists / therapeutic use
  • Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme Inhibitors / therapeutic use*
  • Antihypertensive Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Calcium Channel Blockers / therapeutic use*
  • Child
  • Demography
  • Diuretics / therapeutic use
  • Drug Interactions
  • Emergencies
  • Humans
  • Hypertension / drug therapy*
  • Hypertension / etiology
  • Labetalol / therapeutic use
  • Vasodilator Agents / therapeutic use


  • Adrenergic alpha-Agonists
  • Adrenergic alpha-Antagonists
  • Adrenergic beta-Antagonists
  • Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme Inhibitors
  • Antihypertensive Agents
  • Calcium Channel Blockers
  • Diuretics
  • Vasodilator Agents
  • Labetalol