Mild-to-moderate hypertension is common, and its natural history is reasonably well defined. The association of elevated blood pressure with left ventricular hypertrophy, insulin resistance, renal dysfunction, and increased propensity toward atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease and ventricular arrhythmias has been characterized. These associations, however, are not well predicted by the level of blood pressure elevation, suggesting some independence between blood pressure levels and cardiovascular complications. Although the reduction in pressure-related outcomes caused by therapeutic interventions (e.g., stroke) has been demonstrated, a similar reduction in many atherosclerotic outcomes has not been definitively demonstrated. The latter observation may be related to a number of factors but may be partly explained by the lack of direct correlation between blood pressure and cardiovascular outcome. This review attempts to update available information on the intermediating factors mitigating the relation among blood pressure, adverse cardiovascular outcome, and the treatment of hypertension.