We investigated the effect of captopril on plasma norepinephrine concentration and blood pressure in two groups of hypertensive patients. One group consisted of five severely hypertensive patients rendered hypernoradrenergic by administration of a minoxidil-propranolol-diuretic regimen. The other group was ten untreated mildly hypertensive patients. Two hours after 12.5mg of captopril, blood pressure was lowered (p<05) in four of the five hypernoradrenergic patients from 180±8/102±8 to 132±7/77±8 mmHg. Chronic administration of 100-150mg of captopril tid caused no further blood pressure reduction. Precaptopril plasma norepinephrine concentration was 925±206 and two hours after the 12.5mg dose was 807±80 pg/ml. Three months later having advanced the dose to 300-450 mg/day it was lower (p<05) at 752 pg/ml. The acute blood pressure response correlated (r=-0.72, p<001) with the precaptopril plasma norepinephrine. Precaptopril blood pressure in the mild hypertensive patients was 146±4/98±1, after a 25-100mg dose it was 137±6/91±2 (diastolic p<05) and at two months with the same captopril dose bid it was 141±8/88±4 mmHg (diastolic p<01). Corresponding initial PNE was 425±72, two hours after captopril 405±47 and 310±63 pg/ml (p<05) with chronic administration. Thus, captopril lowers blood pressure in both hypernoradrenergic and eunoradrenergic hypertensive patients without increasing plasma norepinephrine suggesting some unique dampening effect of this drug on the sympathetic nervous system. Also, addition of captopril to triple therapy lowered blood pressure in proportion to plasma norepinephrine levels suggesting importance to its action on this sympathetic nervous system effector.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Internal Medicine