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Am J Hypertens. 1991 May;4(5 Pt 1):404-9.

Intestinal absorption of calcium and calcium metabolism in patients with essential hypertension and normal renal function.

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Department of Medicine, University of Southern California School of Medicine, Los Angeles 90033.


Several abnormalities of calcium metabolism have been described in patients with essential hypertension, and they have been linked to the pathogenesis of hypertension. Intestinal calcium absorption has been shown to be decreased in rats with spontaneous hypertension, but it has not been studied in patients with essential hypertension. In these studies we have for the first time measured intestinal absorption of calcium (using oral and intravenous administration of 47Ca), along with other parameters of calcium metabolism, in 14 patients with essential hypertension and normal renal function and in 16 normal subjects. There was no difference in serum total or ionized calcium, serum phosphorus, parathyroid hormone (PTH), 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D), 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D (1,25(OH)2D), and 24,25-dihydroxy-vitamin D(24,25(OH)2D) among hypertensives and normotensives. The urinary excretion of calcium, on the other hand, was greater in hypertensive than in normotensive subjects (195 +/- 33 v 107 +/- 13 mg/24 h, P less than .05). There was also no difference in intestinal absorption of calcium after 2 and 24 h among hypertensives and normotensives. When hypertensive patients were stratified according to plasma renin activity (PRA) we found that patients with low PRA had higher intestinal absorption of calcium at 2 h (23 +/- 2.9 v 18 +/- 0.6%, P less than .05) but not at 24 h. Serum total and ionized calcium, PTH, and 1,25(OH)2D were not different between patients with low and those with normal-high PRA. The major derangement of calcium metabolism in patients with essential hypertension is hypercalciuria. This abnormality is more pronounced in patients with low PRA, and it may lead to increased vitamin D-dependent intestinal absorption of calcium.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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