The Role of Sympatho-Inhibition in Combination Treatment of Obesity-Related Hypertension

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Obesity-related hypertension is commonly characterized by increased sympathetic nerve activity and is therefore acknowledged as a predominantly neurogenic form of hypertension. The sustained sympatho-excitation not only contributes to the rise in blood pressure but also elicits a vicious cycle which facilitates further weight gain and progression of associated co-morbidities. While weight loss and exercise remain at the forefront of therapy for obesity and obesity-related hypertension, the difficulties in achieving and maintaining long-term weight loss with lifestyle measures and the variable blood pressure response to weight loss often necessitate prescription of antihypertensive drug therapy. Remarkably, there are no specific recommendations for pharmacologic treatment for obese patients with arterial hypertension in any of the current guidelines and general principles of antihypertensive treatment are applied. The use of β-blockers and diuretics is commonly discouraged as first- or second-line therapy due to their unfavorable metabolic effects. This review explores evolving therapeutic strategies which based on their interference with pathophysiologic mechanism relevant in the context of obesity may guide optimized treatment of obesity-related hypertension.

Original languageEnglish
Article number99
JournalCurrent Hypertension Reports
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2017


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