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Hypertension in the military patient
  1. Alys Hunter1,
  2. D A Holdsworth2,
  3. J D'Arcy3,
  4. K Bailey4 and
  5. B Casadei5
  1. 1MDHU Portsmouth, Queen Alexandra Hospital, Portsmouth, UK
  2. 2Department of Physiology, Anatomy and Genetics, University of Oxford, Oxford, UK
  3. 3RCDM (Oxford), John Radcliffe Hospital, Oxford, UK
  4. 4AMD, Marlborough Lines, Andover, UK
  5. 5Division of Cardiovascular Medicine, Radcliffe Department of Medicine, University of Oxford, John Radcliffe Hospital, Oxford, UK
  1. Correspondence to Flt Lt Alys Hunter, MDHU Portsmouth, Queen Alexandra Hospital, Portsmouth PO6 1LY, UK; alys.maconie{at}


Hypertension and hypertension-related diseases are a leading cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide. A diagnosis of hypertension can have serious occupational implications for military personnel. This article examines the diagnosis and management of hypertension in military personnel, in the context of current international standards. We consider the consequences of hypertension in the military environment and potential military-specific issues relating to hypertension.

A 39-year-old fast jet instructor presents for a routine general practitioner (GP) medical. He is a smoker, but has no medical history or other risk factors. After he has been sitting quietly for 5 min, his GP takes his BP using an appropriate and calibrated machine. He is found to have elevated BP, with a reading of 152/90 mm Hg. He has been put forward for promotion and is very concerned that starting medication will prevent him from flying and have a negative impact on his career.


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