Sex differences in hypertension: Where we have been and where we are going

Lindsey A. Ramirez, Jennifer C. Sullivan

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

140 Scopus citations


While it has been known since the 1940s that men have greater increases in blood pressure (BP) compared with women, there have been intense efforts more recently to increase awareness that women are also at risk for developing hypertension and that cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) are the leading causes of death among both men and women in the United States. With the release of the 2017 Hypertension Clinical Guidelines, 46% of adults in the United States are now classified as hypertensive, and hypertension is the primary modifiable risk factor for the development of CVD. This increase in the prevalence of hypertension is reflected in an increase in prevalence among both men and women across all demographics, although there were greater increases in the prevalence of hypertension among men compared with women. As a result, the well-established gender difference in the prevalence of hypertension is even more pronounced and now extends into the sixth decade of life. The goals of this review are to (i) review the historical clinical trial data and hypertension guidelines from the perspective of both genders and then (ii) review the role of the renin–angiotensin system and T-cell activation in contributing to sex differences in BP control.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1247-1254
Number of pages8
JournalAmerican journal of hypertension
Issue number12
StatePublished - Nov 13 2018


  • Blood pressure
  • Gender differences
  • Hypertension
  • Immune system
  • Inflammation
  • Renin–angiotensin system
  • Sex differences
  • T-cells
  • T-regulatory cells

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine


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