Background Blood pressure (BP) elevations are commonly treated in hospitalized patients; however, treatment is not guideline directed. Our objective was to assess BP response to commonly prescribed antihypertensives after the development of severe inpatient hypertension (HTN). Methods This is a cohort study of adults, excluding intensive care unit patients, within a single healthcare system admitted for reasons other than HTN who developed severe HTN (systolic BP>180 or diastolic BP >110 mmHg at least 1 hour after admission). We identified the most commonly administered antihypertensives given within 6 hours of severe HTN (given to >10% of treated patients). We studied the association of treatment with each antihypertensive vs. no treatment on BP change in the 6 hours following severe HTN development using mixed-effects model after adjusting for demographics and clinical characteristics. Results Among 23,147 patients who developed severe HTN, 9,166 received antihypertensive treatment. The most common antihypertensives given were oral metoprolol (n = 1991), oral amlodipine (n = 1812), oral carvedilol (n = 1116), IV hydralazine (n = 1069) and oral hydralazine (n = 953). In the fully adjusted model, treatment with IV hydralazine led to 13 [-15.9, -10.1], 18 [-22.2, -14] and 11 [-14.1, -8.3] mmHg lower MAP, SBP, and DBP in the 6 hours following severe HTN development compared to no treatment. Treatment with oral hydralazine and oral carvedilol also resulted in significantly lower BPs in the 6 hours following severe HTN development (6 [-9.1, -2.1 and -7 [-9.1, -4.2] lower MAP, respectively) compared to no treatment. Receiving metoprolol and amlodipine did not result in a drop in BP compared to no treatment. Conclusion Among commonly used antihypertensives, IV hydralazine resulted in the most significant drop in BP following severe HTN, while metoprolol and amlodipine did not lower BP. Further research to assess the effect of treatment on clinical outcomes and if needed which antihypertensives to administer are necessary.