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Hypertension. 2008 Aug;52(2):222-8. doi: 10.1161/HYPERTENSIONAHA.108.111054. Epub 2008 Jun 30.

Efficacy and safety of the Angiotensin receptor blocker valsartan in children with hypertension aged 1 to 5 years.

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  • 1Division of Nephrology, A-7931, Children's Hospital and Regional Medical Center, 4800 Sand Point Way NE, Seattle, WA 98105, USA. joseph.flynn@seattlechildrens.org


The efficacy and safety of valsartan were studied in 90 children (mean age: 3.2 years; 60% male; 30% black) with systolic blood pressure (SBP) > or =95th percentile. Nineteen percent received valsartan in addition to previous antihypertensive therapy. Subjects were randomly assigned to low-, medium-, or high-dose valsartan for 2 weeks (phase 1) and then reassigned randomly to placebo or to remain on the same valsartan dose for 2 additional weeks (phase 2). After this, subjects were enrolled into a 52-week, open-label phase during which valsartan was dosed to achieve SBP <95th percentile. Statistically significant reductions in SBP and diastolic blood pressure of approximately 8.5 mm Hg and 5.7 mm Hg, respectively, were observed at the end of phase 1 in all of the valsartan dose groups. SBP and diastolic blood pressure were also significantly lower during phase 2 in valsartan recipients compared with placebo recipients. SBP <95th percentile was achieved in 77.3% of subjects during the open-label phase. Adverse events were minor and occurred at similar frequencies in each of the 3 dose groups in phase 1 and at equal frequencies in the valsartan and placebo arms in phase 2. Serious adverse events and drug-related adverse events occurred infrequently during both the double-blind (2.2% and 5.6%, respectively) and open-label (14.8% and 6.8%, respectively) portions of the study. Valsartan treatment had no demonstrable negative effects on growth and development. In this study, the first trial of an antihypertensive agent conducted in children <6 years of age, valsartan effectively lowered SBP and diastolic blood pressure compared with placebo.

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