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Adv Cardiol. 2008;45:82-106. doi: 10.1159/0000115189.

Hypertension and diabetes.

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Department of Internal Medicine D and Hypertension Unit, The Chaim Sheba Medical Center, Tel-Hashomer, Israel.


Both essential hypertension and diabetes mellitus affect the same major target organs. The common denominator of hypertensive/diabetic target organ-disease is the vascular tree. Left ventricular hypertrophy and coronary artery disease are much more common in diabetic hypertensive patients than in patients suffering from hypertension or diabetes alone. The combined presence of hypertension and diabetes concomitantly accelerates the decrease in renal function, the development of diabetic retinopathy and the development of cerebral diseases. Lowering blood pressure to less than 130/80 mm Hg is the primary goal in the management of the hypertensive diabetic patients. Beta-blockers have been reported to adversely affect the overall risk factor profile in the diabetic patient. In contrast, calcium antagonists, angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors and angiotensin receptor blockers have been reported to be either neutral or beneficial with regard to the overall metabolic risk factor profile. Combination therapy is usually required to achieve blood pressure goal in diabetic patients. The addition of aldosterone antagonists may be beneficial in patients with resistant hypertension and low levels of serum potassium. Aggressive control of blood pressure, cholesterol and glucose levels should be attempted to reduce the cardiovascular risk of diabetic hypertensive patients.

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