Current Hypertension Reports

, Volume 2, Issue 3, pp 280–288 | Cite as

Effects of antihypertensive therapy on hypertensive vascular disease

  • Jong Bae Park
  • Ernesto L. Schiffrin


Hypertension is associated with alterations in the structure, function, and mechanical properties of large and small arteries. Changes in the endothelium, smooth muscle cell, extracellular matrix, and possibly the adventitia, contribute to complications of hypertension. In large arteries, vascular hypertrophy is found, often with increased stiffness of media components. In small arteries, particularly in mild hypertension, rearrangement of smooth muscle cells around a smaller lumen without changes in media volume (eutrophic remodeling) occurs; in more severe hypertension, hypertrophic remodeling with increased vascular stiffness can be found. Vascular remodeling is accompanied by an increase in the extracellular matrix, particularly collagen deposition. Recent studies have demonstrated that vascular remodeling and endothelial dysfunction of small and large vessels may be normalized by treatment with some antihypertensive agents (angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors, angiotensin AT1 receptor antagonists, and long-acting calcium channel blockers). Angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors have now been shown to improve outcomes in hypertensive patients, an effect that may in part be related to the vascular protective effects reviewed here.


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© Current Science Inc 2000

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jong Bae Park
    • 1
  • Ernesto L. Schiffrin
    • 1
  1. 1.MRC Multidisciplinary Research Group on HypertensionClinical Research Institute of MontréalMontrealCanada

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