A delayed suppression of the renin-aldosterone axis following saline infusion in human hypertension.
The purpose of this study was to compare the acute suppressibility of the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone (RAA) axis in normotensive (n = 23) and essential hypertensive (n = 62) subjects. Only those hypertensive subjects with normal plasma renin activity (PRA) levels (sodium restricted, upright) were included in the study. Acute suppression of the RAA axis was determined by measuring PRA, plasma angiotensin II (A II), and plasma aldosterone (PA) at frequent intervals during the infusion of isotonic saline (500 ml/hour for 6 hours). Although all parameters fell significantly from control levels by 20-30 minutes in the normotensive subjects, we found that 60% of the hypertensive subjects showed no significant decline in PRA or PA until 120-240 minutes after beginning the infusion. The other hypertensive subjects showed normal RAA suppression. In addition, while there were no significant differences between the three groups in control PRA or PA levels, we found that the PA levels from 30 to 240 minutes during the saline were significantly higher (P less than 0.01) in the hypertensive subjects with delayed suppression. That there were two distinct populations in the hypertensive group was suggested by the bimodality of the frequency response curve, with peaks occurring at 30 and 240 minutes. These studies indicate an abnormality in the acute suppression of the RAA axis in a substantial proportion of subjects with normal renin essential hypertension. Since previous studies in normal subjects have reported that the early phase of response to saline infusion is related to the sodium ion per se and not to intravascular volume expansion, we have come to the conclusion that the present data are consistent with the hypothesis that the delayed suppression hypertensive group has a diminished ability to respond to the sodium ion.
- Copyright © 1976 by American Heart Association