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J Hum Hypertens. 2007 Mar;21(3):212-9. Epub 2006 Dec 14.

Reverse white-coat effect as an independent risk for left ventricular concentric hypertrophy in patients with treated essential hypertension.

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  • 1Division of Hypertension and Nephrology, Department of Medicine, National Cardiovascular Center, Suita, Japan.


Recent studies have shown that the converse phenomenon of white-coat hypertension called 'reverse white-coat hypertension' or 'masked hypertension' is associated with poor cardiovascular prognosis. We assessed the hypothesis that this phenomenon may specifically influence left ventricular (LV) structure in treated hypertensive patients. A total of 272 outpatients (mean age, 65 years) with chronically treated essential hypertension and without remarkable white-coat effect were enrolled. Patients were classified into two groups according to office and daytime ambulatory systolic blood pressure (SBP); that is subjects without (Group 1: office SBP > or =daytime SBP, n=149) and with reverse white-coat effect (Group 2: office SBP<daytime SBP, n=123). LV mass index and relative wall thickness were echocardiographically determined. In all subjects, LV mass index and relative wall thickness were positively correlated with daytime and 24-h SBP, but not with office SBP. In addition, these two indices were inversely correlated with office--daytime SBP difference. LV mass index (136+/-31 and 115+/-28 g/m(2), mean+/-s.d.) and relative wall thickness (0.49+/-0.09 and 0.46+/-0.07) were significantly greater in Group 2 than in Group 1. As for LV geometric patterns, Group 2 had a significantly higher rate of concentric hypertrophy compared with Group 1 (48 and 28%). Multivariate analyses revealed that the presence of reverse white-coat effect was a predictor for LV concentric hypertrophy, independent of age, sex, hypertension duration, antihypertensive treatment and ambulatory blood pressure levels. Our findings demonstrate that reverse white-coat effect is an independent risk factor for LV hypertrophy, especially concentric hypertrophy, in treated hypertensive patients.

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