Animal studies have shown that the cardiovascular system adapts to blood pressure elevation very early in the development of hypertensive disease. This discussion is concerned with structural adaptation in mild or borderline hypertension in humans. A literature review is given, followed by some preliminary data from a current hemodynamic follow-up study on young individuals with mild blood pressure elevation. Hand blood flow at maximal vasodilatation was studied plethysmographically, the baroreceptor reactivity was investigated by analyzing heart rate after intravenously administered angiotensin, and the left ventricle wall thickness was evaluated with M-mode echocardiography. The results indicate that the resistance vessels, the high-pressure baroreceptors, and the left ventricle of the heart are structurally modified even in very mild blood pressure elevation.
- Copyright © 1984 by American Heart Association