Hyperaldosteronism among black and white subjects with resistant hypertension

David A CalhounPaula Weissmann


Recent reports suggesting that the prevalence of primary hyperaldosteronism may be higher than historically thought have relied on an elevated plasma aldosterone concentration/plasma renin activity ratio to either diagnose or identify subjects at high risk of having primary hyperaldosteronism and have not included suppression testing of all evaluated subjects. In this prospective study of 88 consecutive patients referred to a university clinic for resistant hypertension, we determined the 24-hour urinary aldosterone excretion during high dietary salt ingestion, baseline plasma renin activity, and plasma aldosterone in all subjects. Primary hyperaldosteronism was confirmed if plasma renin activity was <1.0 ng/mL per hour and urinary aldosterone was >12 microg/24-hour during high urinary sodium excretion (>200 mEq/24-hour). Eighteen subjects (20%) were confirmed to have primary hyperaldosteronism. The prevalence of hyperaldosteronism was similar in black and white subjects. Of the 14 subjects with confirmed hyperaldosteronism who have been treated with spironolactone, all have manifested a significant reduction in blood pressure. In this population, an elevated plasma aldosterone/plasma renin activity ratio (>20) had a sensitivit...Continue Reading


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