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Vedat Schwenger, Martin Zeier, Eberhard Ritz
Ann Transplant 2001; 6(4): 25-30
With current immunosuppression, elevated blood pressure isfound in almost 90% of renal graft recipients. Major causes of this are impairment of renal function, secondary to chronic allograft nephropathy or less frequently recurrence of primary renal disease, the use of calcineurin inhibitors as immunosuppressants, uncontrolled renin secretion by the shrunken kidneys of the recipient, stenosing lesions of the transplant artery (or the upstream arteries of the recipient), polycytemia and (genetic predisposition) to hypertension of the graft donor. Even minor degrees of blood pressure elevation have a significant impact on survival of the recipient and on graft survival, presumably by amplifying vascular injury to the graft. In this respect elevation of systolic blood pressure and an abnormal circadian blood pressure profile are of particular relevance. In contrast to previous opinion, ACE inhibitors are indicated in the treatment, but, given the causal role of sodium retention and graft vasoconstriction, diuretics and calcium channel blockers remain mainstays of antihypertensive treatment in the renal allograft recipient.