• This review defines hypertensive crisis, hypertensive urgencies, and hypertensive emergencies and provides recent updates on the management of acute hypertension.

  • Nurses are immediately involved in the care of patients with hypertensive emergencies and must know the appropriate treatment for these patients.

  • Currently available intravenous antihypertensive medications, recommended doses, common adverse effects, and compatibilities are discussed in this paper.

Approximately 73.6 million people in the United States aged 20 years or older are affected by hypertension. Although significant improvements have been made with regard to awareness and treatment of hypertension, approximately 30% of adults are still unaware of their disease. Up to 40% of people with hypertension are not receiving treatment, and up to 67% of those treated are not achieving blood pressure control. Hypertension is one of the most common chronic medical conditions, and it occurs almost twice as frequently...

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