Pressor reactivity to norepinephrine and angiotensin in salt-sensitive hypertensive patients.
The mechanisms responsible for increased blood pressure in response to a high dietary sodium intake in salt-sensitive patients with essential hypertension are only partially understood. The possibility that increased reactivity to pressor hormones might contribute to hypertension in these patients has not been adequately investigated. We studied 11 salt-sensitive and 15 salt-resistant patients with essential hypertension while they were ingesting a diet with 20 meq/day sodium for 9 days or one with 200 meq/day sodium for 14 days. During the last 4 days of each dietary regimen, they received 30 mg/day of slow-release nifedipine. Blood pressure response to increasing doses of norepinephrine and angiotensin II (Ang II) was studied at the end of each of four phases of the study. Salt-sensitive patients exhibited a greater blood pressure response to norepinephrine than salt-resistant patients, irrespective of the dietary sodium intake and whether we took into account the dose infused or the actual plasma levels of norepinephrine achieved during the infusion. The blood pressure response to Ang II, on the other hand, was greater in salt-sensitive than salt-resistant patients during low but not during high sodium intake. The blood levels of norepinephrine achieved during the infusion of this hormone were lower in salt-sensitive than in salt-resistant patients. These studies indicate that an increased reactivity to the pressor action of norepinephrine might contribute to the maintenance of hypertension in salt-sensitive patients. The increased reactivity appears to be specific for norepinephrine. In fact, we observed increased reactivity to Ang II during low but not during high sodium intake.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)
- Copyright © 1993 by American Heart Association