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Nurs Res. 1987 Mar-Apr;36(2):106-10.

Profile of the well-controlled, well-adjusted hypertensive patient.


The study purpose was to identify discriminant predictors of blood pressure control and adjustment to chronic illness in 450 hypertensive patients. Hypertension control was determined by physician judgment, and adjustment was assessed by Derogatis' (1977) Psychosocial Adjustment to Illness Scale. Potential predictors of the outcome variables were measured by structured interview, formal instruments, and chart review. Well-controlled hypertensive patients had better health adjustment scores, reported more illness-related job problems and less illness-related sexual problems, were more satisfied with health care, knew what to do about medication side effects, were on medications longer, and had lower blood pressure readings on chart review. Well-adjusted hypertensive patients had fewer hypertension-related problems; had their blood pressure under control; were less likely to eat, smoke, or use drugs to handle tension; had no recent weight gain; knew what to do about medication side effects and that there is no cure for hypertension; were less pessimistic and less likely to worry; rated their stress level lower and their quality of life higher; felt that their health was under their own control; tried to problem solve when coping with stress; were on hypertensive medications a shorter time and on fewer medications overall; did not like to be alone when feeling stressed; and ate fewer high sodium foods.

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