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Hypertension. 2007 Apr;49(4):839-45. Epub 2007 Feb 19.

Effect of spironolactone on blood pressure in subjects with resistant hypertension.

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International Centre for Circulatory Health, Imperial College London, 59 North Wharf Rd, London W2 1PG, United Kingdom.


Spironolactone is recommended as fourth-line therapy for essential hypertension despite few supporting data for this indication. We evaluated the effect among 1411 participants in the Anglo-Scandinavian Cardiac Outcomes Trial-Blood Pressure Lowering Arm who received spironolactone mainly as a fourth-line antihypertensive agent for uncontrolled blood pressure and who had valid BP measurements before and during spironolactone treatment. Among those who received spironolactone, the mean age was 63 years (SD: +/-8 years), 77% were men, and 40% had diabetes. Spironolactone was initiated a median of 3.2 years (interquartile range: 2.0 to 4.4 years) after randomization and added to a mean of 2.9 (SD: +/-0.9) other antihypertensive drugs. The median duration of spironolactone treatment was 1.3 years (interquartile range: 0.6 to 2.6 years). The median dose of spironolactone was 25 mg (interquartile range: 25 to 50 mg) at both the start and end of the observation period. During spironolactone therapy, mean blood pressure fell from 156.9/85.3 mm Hg (SD: +/-18.0/11.5 mm Hg) by 21.9/9.5 mm Hg (95% CI: 20.8 to 23.0/9.0 to 10.1 mm Hg; P<0.001); the BP reduction was largely unaffected by age, sex, smoking, and diabetic status. Spironolactone was generally well tolerated; 6% of participants discontinued the drug because of adverse effects. The most frequent adverse events were gynecomastia or breast discomfort and biochemical abnormalities (principally hyperkaliemia), which were recorded as adverse events in 6% and 2% of participants, respectively. In conclusion, spironolactone effectively lowers blood pressure in patients with hypertension uncontrolled by a mean of approximately 3 other drugs. Although nonrandomized and not placebo controlled, these data support the use of spironolactone in uncontrolled hypertension.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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