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November 10, 2020

The US Preventive Services Task Force Recommendation on Screening for Blood Pressure in Children: Increasing the Pressure to Get It Right

Author Affiliations
  • 1Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago, Chicago, Illinois
JAMA. 2020;324(18):1838-1839. doi:10.1001/jama.2020.21711

In this issue of JAMA the US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) updates its 2013 report on screening of blood pressure in children and adolescents with a new recommendation statement1 and updated evidence report and systematic review.2 After reviewing publications since the earlier report,3 the USPSTF again concludes that, while there is evidence of tracking of blood pressure between childhood and adulthood and some evidence of a relation to subclinical cardiovascular disease, overall there was insufficient evidence to make a recommndation for or against screening for high blood pressure in children and adolescents (I statement).1 As was the case with the 2013 report,3 this conclusion will raise concerns among some medical professionals who care for children and, in particular, pediatric cardiologists and nephrologists who specialize in blood pressure issues.