6 Hypertension Nursing Care Plans


Your nursing care planning guide that includes 6 nursing diagnosis for hypertension (HTN). Get to know the common nursing diagnosis for hypertension, nursing assessment, nursing interventions, and rationale, including teaching and goals. 

What is Hypertension? 

Hypertension is the term used to describe high blood pressure. Hypertension is repeatedly elevated blood pressure exceeding 140 over 90 mmHg. It is categorized as primary or essential (approximately 90% of all cases) or secondary due to an identifiable, sometimes correctable pathological condition, such as renal disease or primary aldosteronism.

Classifications of Hypertension

The American College of Cardiology and American Heart Association published new guidelines (as of 2018) and ways to categorize blood pressure. 

  • Normal: Less than 120/80 mmHg; 
  • Elevated: Systolic between 120-129 and diastolic less than 80; 
  • Stage 1: Systolic between 130-139 and diastolic 80-89
  • Stage 2: Systolic 140 or higher and diastolic at 90 or higher. 
  • Hypertensive Crisis: Higher than 180 for systolic and diastolic higher than 120. 

Nursing Care Plans

Nursing care planning goals for hypertension include lowering or controlling blood pressure, adherence to the therapeutic regimen, lifestyle modifications, and prevention of complications.

Here are six nursing diagnoses for hypertension nursing care plans

  1. Risk for Decreased Cardiac Output
  2. Decreased Activity Tolerance
  3. Acute Pain
  4. Ineffective Coping
  5. Overweight
  6. Deficient Knowledge

Acute Pain

Elevation in resting blood pressure means a progressive reduction in sensitivity to acute pain, which could result in a tendency to restore arousal levels in the presence of painful stimuli.

Nursing Diagnosis

  • Acute Pain

Related Factors

Common related factors for acute pain nursing diagnosis:

  • Increased cerebral vascular pressure

Defining Characteristics

The common assessment cues could serve as defining characteristics or part of your “as evidenced by” in your diagnostic statement.

  • Verbal reports of throbbing pain located in suboccipital region, present on awakening and disappearing spontaneously after being up and about
  • Reluctance to move head, rubbing head, avoidance of bright lights and noise, wrinkled brow, clenched fists
  • Changes in appetite
  • Reports of stiffness of neck, dizziness, blurred vision, nausea, and vomiting

Desired Outcomes

Goals and expected outcomes for acute pain nursing diagnosis:

  • Patient will report relief of pain/discomfort.
  • Patient will verbalize methods that provide relief.
  • Patient will follow prescribed pharmacological regimen.
  • Patient will demonstrate use of relaxation skills and diversional activities, as indicated, for individual situation.

Nursing Assessment and Rationales

The following are nursing assessments to address acute pain for this hypertension nursing care plan.

1. Note the client’s attitude toward pain and use of pain medications, including any history of substance abuse.
To assess etiology or precipitating contributory factors.

2. Determine specifics of pain (location, characteristics, intensity (0–10 scale), onset, and duration). Note nonverbal cues.
Facilitates diagnosis of problem and initiation of appropriate therapy. Helpful in evaluating the effectiveness of therapy.


Nursing Interventions and Rationales

Here are the therapeutic nursing interventions for this hypertension nursing diagnosis to address acute pain.

1. Encourage and maintain bed rest during the acute phase.
Minimizes stimulation and promotes relaxation.

2. Provide or recommend nonpharmacological measures to relieve headache such as cool cloth to forehead; back and neck rubs; quiet, dimly lit room; relaxation techniques (guided imagery, distraction); and diversional activities.
Measures that reduce cerebral vascular pressure and slow or block sympathetic response effectively relieve headaches and associated complications.

3. Eliminate or minimize vasoconstricting activities that may aggravate headache (straining at stool, prolonged coughing, bending over).
Activities that increase vasoconstriction accentuate the headache in the presence of increased cerebral vascular pressure.

4. Assist patient with ambulation as needed.
Dizziness and blurred vision frequently are associated with vascular headaches. The patient may also experience episodes of postural hypotension, causing weakness when ambulating.

5. Provide liquids, soft foods, frequent mouth care if nosebleeds occur, or nasal packing has been done to stop bleeding.
Promotes general comfort. Nasal packing may interfere with swallowing or require mouth breathing, leading to stagnation of oral secretions and drying of mucous membranes.

6. Administer medications as indicated:

  • Analgesics; Antianxiety agents: lorazepam (Ativan), alprazolam (Xanax), diazepam (Valium).
    Reduce or control pain and decrease stimulation of the sympathetic nervous system. May aid in the reduction of tension and discomfort that is intensified by stress.

Cardiac Care Plans

Nursing care plans about the different diseases of the cardiovascular system:


Matt Vera is a registered nurse with a bachelor of science in nursing since 2009 and is currently working as a full-time writer and editor for Nurseslabs. During his time as a student, he knows how frustrating it is to cram on difficult nursing topics. Finding help online is nearly impossible. His situation drove his passion for helping student nurses by creating content and lectures that are easy to digest. Knowing how valuable nurses are in delivering quality healthcare but limited in number, he wants to educate and inspire nursing students. As a nurse educator since 2010, his goal in Nurseslabs is to simplify the learning process, break down complicated topics, help motivate learners, and look for unique ways of assisting students in mastering core nursing concepts effectively.

12 thoughts on “6 Hypertension Nursing Care Plans”

  1. Real i like the website as i’m a nursing student third year, i wish if could get an app from play store for Android, “Nurseslabs.com” with this materials care plans for different medical conditions to guide on caring patients according to standard and finally saving life of many patients through competence and experience.👊🙏

  2. Hi! Its really helpful but couldn’t find any nursing interventions as assessments are not considered as an intervention!! Just a request if you could add some nursing interventions for hypertension, it’ll be great. Thank you.

  3. I love your website and info provided. Please make an App for my phone/tablet as I am a PACE RN CM and could really use it for in the field.

  4. I always run to you. Thank you so much.
    I’m kindly requesting you to help us with more of the nursing interventions for the different nursing diagnoses of this condition plus those of other conditions in the different care plans. May God bless you exceedingly and abundantly.


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