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Am J Nephrol. 2011;34(4):381-90. doi: 10.1159/000331067. Epub 2011 Sep 2.

Epidemiology of interdialytic ambulatory hypertension and the role of volume excess.

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Indiana University School of Medicine and Richard L. Roudebush Veterans Administration Medical Center, 1481 West 10th Street, Indianapolis, IN 46202, USA.



The epidemiology of hypertension among hemodialysis (HD) patients is difficult to describe accurately because of difficulties in the assessment of blood pressure (BP).


Using 44-hour interdialytic ambulatory BP measurements, we describe the epidemiology of hypertension in a cohort of 369 patients. To seek correlates of hypertension control, antihypertensive agents were withdrawn among patients with controlled hypertension and ambulatory BP monitoring was repeated.


Hypertension (defined as an average ambulatory systolic BP ≥135 mm Hg or diastolic BP ≥85 mm Hg, or the use of antihypertensive medications) was prevalent in 82% of the patients and independently associated with epoetin use, lower body mass index and fewer years on dialysis. Although 89% of the patients were being treated, hypertension was controlled adequately in only 38%. Poor control was independently associated with greater antihypertensive drug use. Inferior vena cava (IVC) diameter in expiration was associated with increased risk of poorly controlled hypertension both in cross-sectional analysis and after withdrawal of antihypertensive drugs.


Interdialytic hypertension is highly prevalent and difficult to control among HD patients. End-expiration IVC diameter is associated with poor control of hypertension in cross-sectional analyses as well as after washout of antihypertensive drugs. Among HD patients, an attractive target for improving hypertension control appears to be the reduction of extracellular fluid volume.

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