Short- and long-term effects of antihypertensive drugs on arterial reflections, compliance, and impedance

Chih Tai Ting*, Chen Huan Chen, Mau Song Chang, Frank C.P. Yin

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

128 Scopus citations


This article reviews our work on the effects of different classes of antihypertensive agents on the hemodynamic alterations in essential human hypertension. Short-term studies ware done during cardiac catheterization in young normotensive subjects (mean age, 33 years; range, 19 to 40) and several different age-matched (range, 25 to 53 years) groups of patients with essential hypertension. Aortic impedance, resistance, wave reflections, and compliance were calculated from high-fidelity recordings of ascending aortic pressure and flow signals during baseline and after nitroprusside, propranolol followed by phentolamine, phentolamine, captopril, and nifedipine, respectively, at doses sufficient to normalize blood pressure in each hypertensive group. Propranolol exacerbated all the hemodynamic parameters; these effects were only partially overcome by phentolamine. Among the other agents only phentolamine did not completely normalize compliance, and only captopril did not completely normalize wave reflections. The long- term study was a randomized, double-blind comparison of fosinopril and atenolol in 79 normotensive subjects and 79 essential hypertensive patients. Baseline 24-hour ambulatory blood pressures and carotid artery tonometry to index wave reflections were performed in all subjects and in hypertensive patients after 8 weeks of therapy. Both fosinopril and atenolol normalized blood pressure and lowered the elevated augmentation index, but fosinopril had a significantly larger effect than atenolol. Both short- and long-term β-blockade did not have as beneficial an effect as the other agents. Thus, the differing hemodynamic effects of the various classes of antihypertensive agents might be a consideration in the choice of therapy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)524-530
Number of pages7
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 1995


  • calcium antagonist
  • captopril
  • hypertension, essential
  • nitroprusside
  • receptors, adrenergic, alpha
  • receptors, adrenergic, beta
  • vasodilator agents


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