Gonzalez A, Lopez B, Diez J. New directions in the assessment and treatment of hypertensive heart disease. Curr Opin Nephrol Hypertens 2005 Sep;14(5):428-434.
PURPOSE OF REVIEW: This article will review briefly the emerging new concepts in the diagnosis and treatment of myocardial fibrosis in patients with hypertensive heart disease.
RECENT FINDINGS: Although hypertensive heart disease is characterized clinically by development of left-ventricular hypertrophy in the absence of a cause other than arterial hypertension, changes in the composition of myocardial tissue also develop in arterial hypertension leading to structural remodeling of the myocardium (e.g. fibrosis). Recent available data on the determination of serum concentrations of collagen-derived serum peptides and quantitative analysis of echoreflectivity to address the presence of fibrosis in the myocardium of hypertensive patients are promising. In addition, preliminary data suggest that the goal of reducing myocardial fibrosis is achievable in patients with hypertensive heart disease using specific antihypertensive agents (e.g. those interfering with angiotensin II).
SUMMARY: The time has come to revisit the current management of hypertensive heart disease simply focused on detecting left-ventricular hypertrophy and controlling blood pressure to reduce left-ventricular mass. It is necessary to develop new approaches aimed at assessing and repairing alterations of myocardial structure and protect myocardial function and, in so doing, to reduce in a more-effective manner adverse risk associated with hypertensive heart disease.