The problem accounts for up to 10% of cases of famous hypertension, but it is still little known by the population.
Have you ever heard of kidney hypertension?. The condition is similar to classic hypertension (the chronic and dangerous elevation of blood pressure), except that, in this case, it starts in the kidneys and only then affects the rest of the body. It is estimated that up to 10% of hypertensive patients are in this category, says the kidney specialist in Delhi.
It all starts with a kind of false alarm. Nephrologist in Delhi explains: in addition to filtering the blood, the kidney detects decreases in its flow. When they occur, it is a situation of probable emergency, such as hemorrhage, for example. Hence, the organ starts to secrete renin, a hormone that leads to an increase in another one, angiotensin 2, in the circulation.
In the kidneys, such angiotensin 2 compresses the vessels to reduce urine production and thus save as much water as possible. In the sympathetic nervous system, which controls heartbeat, breathing and the like, it helps to raise blood pressure. It is a necessary move to guarantee the blood supply when it is threatened.
“Only, in renal hypertension, this happens for no apparent reason, when there is no real urgency”, differentiates the nephrologist in Delhi. The alarm, issued constantly by the kidneys to the rest of the body, causes blood pressure to rise chronically unnecessarily.
The causes of renal hypertension
Abnormal activation of the renin-angiotensin system, the technical name for this joint action of hormones, usually occurs when there is an obstruction in the renal artery. The main responsible for this is atherosclerosis, a blockage caused by the deposition of fat plates on the vessel wall.
The process is also linked to essential hypertension – also called primary, when it is not possible to establish a single cause for the disease. Old age, smoking, obesity, diabetes and high cholesterol are risk factors for both of these problems.
Kidney health is another point of attention. “Disorders that attack the kidneys, such as chronic kidney disease or stones and nephritis that develop into permanent inflammation at the site, can lead to the condition”, points out the nephrologist in Noida.
Symptoms and diagnosis
The constant rise in pressure is the main sign. Therefore, in general the diagnosis of renal hypertension is confirmed during investigations to understand what is causing blood pressure to take off.
When renal hypertension has not yet reverberated into blood vessels, it is more difficult to catch, but not impossible.
“A routine abdominal ultrasound can detect the state of the arteries that supply the kidney and changes in blood flow to the organ”, comments the kidney specialist in Noida.
It is similar to that of the most famous hypertension. Especially because, in most cases, the disease is treated with drugs that inhibit the renin-angiotensin system. Even if it is not the only cause of the high pressure, it will always be involved in its control.
But it is important to make this differentiation because, if the source of the problem is kidney trouble, you will have to fight it too. Faced with a situation of difficult control, the doctor sometimes resort to surgery that restores the flow of blood in these organs, explains the nephrologist in Gurgaon.
Better than waiting for all this to happen is preventing it, right? Then write down the tips given by the kidney specialist in Gurgaon, which also apply to cardiovascular disease in general:
- Don’t smoke
- Adopt a balanced diet
- Avoid being overweight
- Exercise regularly