(1/2997) Ambulatory blood pressure monitoring and progression in patients with IgA nephropathy.

BACKGROUND: Hypertension is a recognized marker of poor prognosis in IgA nephropathy. METHODS: The present study investigated the prevalence of white-coat hypertension, the diurnal rhythm of blood pressure (BP), the effectiveness of antihypertensive drug therapy, and the effect of the above on the progression of the kidney disease in IgA nephropathy. One hundred twenty-six IgA nephropathy patients were selected consecutively for 24-h ambulatory blood pressure monitoring (ABPM). Fifty-five patients were normotensive and 71 were treated hypertensives. Their antihypertensive drugs were angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors (ACEI) alone or in combination with calcium-channel blockers (CCB). RESULTS: The mean night-time BP of normotensives (108+/-9/67+/-6 mmHg) was significantly lower than their day-time BP (125+/-8/82+/-7 mmHg, P<0.05). There was no significant difference between the mean day-time and night-time BP in hypertensive patients (125+/-9/82+/-7 mmHg vs 128+/-10/85+/-9 mmHg). The circadian variation of BP was preserved ('dippers') in 82% of the normotensive and 7% of the hypertensive patients (P<0.001). There were 10 'white-coat hypertensives' among the patients classified as normotensives with ABPM (mean office blood pressure 149+/-7/96+/-8 mmHg, 24-h blood pressure 127+/-6/83+/-5 mmHg, P<0.05) and 14 among treated hypertensives (mean office BP 152+/-8/98+/-6 mmHg, 24-h BP 130+/-4/85+/-8 mmHg, P<0.05). There was no difference in mean day-time BP among normotensive and treated hypertensive patients (125+/-8/81+/-5 mmHg vs 128+/-10/85+/-9 mmHg). Hypertensives had significantly higher night-time BP (125+/-9/85+/-9 mmHg) than normotensives (108+/-9/67+/-6 mmHg, P<0.001). There was no difference in serum creatinine levels among the different groups at the time of the ABPM. However, thirty-six+/-4.1 months after the ABPM, hypertensive patients (n=52) had higher serum creatinine levels (124+/-32 micromol/l) than at the time of the ABPM (101+/-28 micromol/l). The serum creatinine of normotensive patients (n=43) did not change during the follow-up period. 'Non-dipper' normotensives (n=10) had significantly higher serum creatinine levels at the end of the follow-up period than at its beginning (106+/-17 micromol/l vs 89+/-18 micromol/l, P<0.05). There was no increase in serum creatinine of 'dipper' normotensives. The mean serum creatinine of 'white-coat hypertensives' was significantly higher at the end of the study period than at its beginning. CONCLUSIONS: There is no diurnal blood pressure variation in most of the hypertensive IgA nephropathy patients. ACEI and CCB treatment have better effect on day-time than night-time hypertension. The lack of the circadian rhythm and 'white-coat hypertension' seems to accelerate the progression of IgA nephropathy.  (+info)

(2/2997) Restriction of placental and fetal growth in sheep alters fetal blood pressure responses to angiotensin II and captopril.

1. We have measured arterial blood pressure between 115 and 145 days gestation in normally grown fetal sheep (control group; n = 16) and in fetal sheep in which growth was restricted by experimental restriction of placental growth and development (PR group; n = 13). There was no significant difference in the mean gestational arterial blood pressure between the PR (42.7 +/- 2.6 mmHg) and control groups (37.7 +/- 2.3 mmHg). Mean arterial blood pressure and arterial PO2 were significantly correlated in control animals (r = 0.53, P < 0.05, n = 16), but not in the PR group. 2. There were no changes in mean arterial blood pressure in either the PR or control groups in response to captopril (7.5 microg captopril min-1; PR group n = 7, control group n = 6) between 115 and 125 days gestation. After 135 days gestation, there was a significant decrease (P < 0.05) in the fetal arterial blood pressure in the PR group but not in the control group during the captopril infusion (15 microg captopril min-1; PR group n = 7, control group n = 6). 3. There was a significant effect (F = 14.75; P < 0.001) of increasing doses of angiotensin II on fetal diastolic blood pressure in the PR and control groups. The effects of angiotensin II were different (F = 8.67; P < 0.05) in the PR and control groups at both gestational age ranges. 4. These data indicate that arterial blood pressure may be maintained by different mechanisms in growth restricted fetuses and normally grown counterparts and suggests a role for the fetal renin-angiotensin system in the maintenance of blood pressure in growth restricted fetuses.  (+info)

(3/2997) Contribution of L-type Ca2+ current to electrical activity in sinoatrial nodal myocytes of rabbits.

The role of L-type calcium current (ICa,L) in impulse generation was studied in single sinoatrial nodal myocytes of the rabbit, with the use of the amphotericin-perforated patch-clamp technique. Nifedipine, at a concentration of 5 microM, was used to block ICa,L. At this concentration, nifedipine selectively blocked ICa,L for 81% without affecting the T-type calcium current (ICa,T), the fast sodium current, the delayed rectifier current (IK), and the hyperpolarization-activated inward current. Furthermore, we did not observe the sustained inward current. The selective action of nifedipine on ICa,L enabled us to determine the activation threshold of ICa,L, which was around -60 mV. As nifedipine (5 microM) abolished spontaneous activity, we used a combined voltage- and current-clamp protocol to study the effects of ICa,L blockade on repolarization and diastolic depolarization. This protocol mimics the action potential such that the repolarization and subsequent diastolic depolarization are studied in current-clamp conditions. Nifedipine significantly decreased action potential duration at 50% repolarization and reduced diastolic depolarization rate over the entire diastole. Evidence was found that recovery from inactivation of ICa,L occurs during repolarization, which makes ICa,L available already early in diastole. We conclude that ICa,L contributes significantly to the net inward current during diastole and can modulate the entire diastolic depolarization.  (+info)

(4/2997) Changes in porcine transmitral flow velocity pattern and its diastolic determinants during partial coronary occlusion.

OBJECTIVES: To define the mechanical determinants of transmitral flow and the effect of heart rate during regional ischemia. BACKGROUND: Myocardial ischemia changes the transmitral flow velocity pattern due to disease-induced changes in the heart's diastolic properties. METHODS: Regional ischemia was produced in 12 pigs by partially occluding the left anterior descending coronary artery until segment-length shortening in the ischemic region fell by 20%. Transmitral flow velocity patterns and their determinants were measured under two conditions, baseline and ischemia, at two heart rates, 70 and 90 beats/min. RESULTS: Regional ischemia had a significant effect on two determinants of filling: relaxation, which was slower, and chamber stiffness, which increased. These changes were associated with reduced contractility and increased myocardial stiffness, resulting in an early transmitral flow pattern that was flatter and narrower, but no change in the late flow pattern. Moderate increases in heart rate accelerated relaxation and decreased atrioventricular pressure gradient but had no effect on contractility or myocardial or chamber stiffness, resulting in an early transmitral flow pattern that was flatter and narrower and an increased late flow velocity. CONCLUSIONS: This model of regional ischemia leads to a flatter and narrower early transmitral flow velocity pattern and no change in late flow due to a combination of slowed left ventricular relaxation and increased chamber stiffness. Reflex increases in heart rate that accompany ischemia tend to mask this effect.  (+info)

(5/2997) Decreased left ventricular filling pressure 8 months after corrective surgery in a 55-year-old man with tetralogy of Fallot: adaptation for increased preload.

A 55-year-old man with tetralogy of Fallot underwent corrective surgery. Left ventricular filling pressure increased markedly with increased left ventricular volume one month after surgery, then decreased over the next 7 months, presumably due to increased left ventricular compliance.  (+info)

(6/2997) Cell death in acromegalic cardiomyopathy.

BACKGROUND: Prolonged untreated acromegaly leads to a nonspecific myopathy characterized by ventricular dysfunction and failure. However, the mechanisms responsible for the alterations of cardiac pump function remain to be defined. Because cell death is implicated in most cardiac disease processes, the possibility has been raised that myocyte apoptosis may occur in the acromegalic heart, contributing to the deterioration of ventricular hemodynamics. METHODS AND RESULTS: Ten acromegalic patients with diastolic dysfunction and 4 also with systolic dysfunction were subjected to electrocardiography, Holter monitoring, 2-dimensional echocardiography, cardiac catheterization, and biventricular and coronary angiography before surgical removal of a growth hormone-secreting pituitary adenoma. Endomyocardial biopsies were obtained and analyzed quantitatively in terms of tissue scarring and myocyte and nonmyocyte apoptosis. Myocardial samples from papillary muscles of patients who underwent valve replacement for mitral stenosis were used for comparison. The presence of apoptosis in myocytes and interstitial cells was determined by confocal microscopy with the use of 2 histochemical methods, consisting of terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase (TdT) assay and Taq probe in situ ligation. Acromegaly was characterized by a 495-fold and 305-fold increase in apoptosis of myocytes and nonmyocytes, respectively. The magnitude of myocyte apoptosis correlated with the extent of impairment in ejection fraction and the duration of the disease. A similar correlation was found with the magnitude of collagen accumulation, indicative of previous myocyte necrosis. Myocyte death was independent from the hormonal levels of growth hormone and insulin-like growth factor-1. Apoptosis of interstitial cells did not correlate with ejection fraction. CONCLUSIONS: Myocyte cell death, apoptotic and necrotic in nature, may be critical for the development of ventricular dysfunction and its progression to cardiac failure with acromegaly.  (+info)

(7/2997) Hypertension treatment and the prevention of coronary heart disease in the elderly.

Both isolated systolic hypertension (>140 mm Hg/<90 mm Hg) and systolic/diastolic hypertension (>140 mm Hg/>90 mm Hg) are major risk factors for cardiovascular disease in the elderly. Specific antihypertensive drug therapy is available if lifestyle interventions fail to reduce blood pressure to a normal level. Diuretics and beta blockers both reduce the occurrence of adverse events related to cerebrovascular disease; however, diuretics are more effective in reducing events related to coronary heart disease. Treated patients are less likely to develop severe hypertension or congestive heart failure. In most instances, low-dose diuretic therapy should be used as initial antihypertensive therapy in the elderly. A long-acting dihydropyridine calcium channel blocker may be used as alternative therapy in elderly patients with isolated systolic hypertension. Trials are being conducted to evaluate the long-term effects of angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors and angiotensin-II receptor blockers in elderly patients with uncomplicated hypertension.  (+info)

(8/2997) Early detection of anthracycline induced cardiotoxicity in asymptomatic patients with normal left ventricular systolic function: autonomic versus echocardiographic variables.

OBJECTIVE: To investigate left ventricular dysfunction in patients who had been treated with anthracycline based chemotherapy. METHODS: Autonomic function was compared with left ventricular diastolic function in 20 asymptomatic women with normal systolic function (left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) > 0.50) treated for breast cancer with high dose anthracycline based chemotherapy, and 20 age matched healthy controls. Left ventricular diastolic function was assessed echocardiographically by measuring the early peak flow velocity to atrial peak flow velocity ratio, isovolumic relaxation time, and deceleration time. Heart rate variability analysis was assessed for time domain and frequency domain parameters. RESULTS: The mean (SD) age of the patients was 45 (7) years and the mean LVEF was 0.59 (0.06). The time interval after the end of chemotherapy was 29 (27) months. One or more diastolic variables were abnormal in 50% of the patients. Heart rate variability was abnormal in 85% of patients. Mean values of both time domain and frequency domain parameters were decreased (p < 0.05), in particular the parasympathetic indices. CONCLUSIONS: Autonomic impairment occurs in a large proportion of asymptomatic patients with normal systolic left ventricular function after high dose anthracycline based chemotherapy. In particular, heart rate variability analysis may be a sensitive tool to identify the first signs of cardiotoxicity in these patients.  (+info)