Salt, Blood Pressure, and Aldosterone in Women and Men
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See related article, pp 1083–1090
Hippocrates introduced personalized medicine >2500 years ago. He realized his patients were individuals and had to be assessed as such. The fact that one size does not fit all has been recognized by practicing physicians since that time. We automatically learn to phenotype our patients in terms of many criteria, in terms of age, sex, ethnic background, and numerous other classifications. Generally, no genetic testing necessary.
In this month’s Hypertension, Shukri et al1 draw attention to several phenotypes. They studied a large number of normotensive and hypertensive men and women. The subjects ingested either a 200 or 10 mmol/d sodium diet with a generous and fixed potassium intake for 5 to 7 days. Angiotensin II (Ang II) infusions were performed at both sodium-intake levels, and aldosterone responses were monitored. The investigators found that women were more salt sensitive than men. The data showed a 30% greater degree of salt sensitivity in women, compared with men, irrespective of age or blood pressure status. Furthermore, with Ang II, the vascular, as reflected by change in renal blood …