Acute and chronic effect of nifedipine in primary aldosteronism

G. Carpenè, S. Rocco, G. Opocher, F. Mantero

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Since calcium entry blocker drugs can interfere with aldosterone secretion in vitro, a similar effect in vivo, in man, has been suggested and partially confirmed. The data available in primary aldosteronism are more controversial. Therefore, we have studied the acute and chronic effect of nifedipine in 7 patients with idiopathic hyperaldosteronism (IHA) and 8 with aldosterone producing adenoma (APA). On 2 different days, 10 mg of nifedipine or placebo were given sublingually to the patients and blood pressure and heart rate were recorded every 5 min. for 60 min. Plasma aldosterone, cortisol, PRA and serum K were measured at 0, 30 and 60 min. 5 patients with IHA and 6 with APA received nifedipine 20 mg per os bid for 3 months; the same parameters were evaluated on days 0, 30, 60 and 90; urinary aldosterone was measured on days 0, 30, 60 and 90. BP decreased in both groups both after acute and chronic administration of nifedipine. Plasma aldosterone showed a similar trend either after acute nifedipine or placebo; however, during chronic treatment it was slightly decreased in IHA patients. Cortisol, PRA, urinary aldosterone and K+ remained unchanged. In conclusion, nifedipine is an effective antihypertensive agent also in primary aldosteronism; its aldosterone inhibiting properties are minimal and seem to be present only during long-term therapy in IHA.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1263-1272
Number of pages10
JournalClinical and Experimental Hypertension
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 1989


  • Nifedipine
  • Primary aldosteronism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine
  • Physiology


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