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Invited Commentary
April 2017

The Complexities of HypertensionOne Disease or Many?

Author Affiliations
  • 1Duke Clinical Research Institute, Durham, North Carolina
JAMA Cardiol. 2017;2(4):389-390. doi:10.1001/jamacardio.2016.5676

In 1905, Korotkoff1 presented his seminal work on the use of auscultation to measure blood pressure (BP), a breakthrough that would ultimately allow for universal, routine noninvasive measurement of BP and screening for hypertension. That same year, an editorial in the British Medical Journal provided a cautionary view on BP measurement: “There is a certain risk that the multiplication of instruments tends to pauperize the senses and to weaken their clinical acuity; even the sphygmograph is mainly used nowadays rather for the purpose of demonstration or of making a permanent record than for what it can tell us in diagnosis or prognosis.”2

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