Resistant/Refractory Hypertension and Sleep Apnoea: Current Knowledge and Future Challenges
Martínez-García, Miguel Angel
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Hypertension is one of the most frequent cardiovascular risk factors. The population of hypertensive patients includes some phenotypes whose blood pressure levels are particularly difficult to control, thus putting them at greater cardiovascular risk. This is especially true of so-called resistant hypertension (RH) and refractory hypertension (RfH). Recent findings suggest that the former may be due to an alteration in the renin–angiotensin–aldosterone axis, while the latter seems to be more closely related to sympathetic hyper-activation. Both these pathophysiological mechanisms are also activated in patients with obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA). It is not surprising, therefore, that the prevalence of OSA in RH and RfH patients is very high (as reflected in several studies) and that treatment with continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) manages to reduce blood pressure levels in a clinically significant way in both these groups of hypertensive patients. It is therefore necessary to incorporate into the multidimensional treatment of patients with RH and RfH (changes in lifestyle, control of obesity and drug treatment) a study of the possible existence of OSA, as this is a potentially treatable disease. There are many questions that remain to be answered, especially regarding the ideal combination of treatment in patients with RH/RfH and OSA (drugs, renal denervation, CPAP treatment) and patients’ varying response to CPAP treatment.
Is part ofJournal of Clinical Medicine, 2019, vol. 8, núm. 11, p. 1872
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