Renal artery stenosis, particularly related to advancing atherosclerotic disease, is a common concern to internists seeing patients with worsening hypertension and deteriorating renal function. Understanding the hormonal and hemodynamic consequences of critical vascular lesions allows better selection of antihypertensive therapy. With the application of potent antihypertensive agents-especially those that block the renin-angiotensin system, such as ACE inhibitors or the soon-to-be-released angiotensin receptor antagonists-blood pressure control often is not the primary reason to consider renal revascularization. Instead, protection of renal function beyond a critical level of arterial stenosis is becoming the main indication for both percutaneous angioplasty and surgical revascularization. Both procedures pose hazards, so optimal management of the patient with renovascular hypertension depends on achieving a balance between the risks and benefits to the individual patient. It remains incumbent upon the internist to weight the cardiovascular and cerebrovascular risks against both the gains in blood pressure control and the likely progression of renal compromise during the patient's lifetime. Improved understanding of the outcomes of medical therapy versus revascularization depends on future prospective studies.
|Number of pages
|Endocrinology and Metabolism Clinics of North America
|Published - 1994
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism