Management of hypertension in chronic heart failure

Saraswathy Manickavasagam, Ramanna Merla, Michael M. Koerner, Ken Fujise, Sanjay Kunapuli, Salvatore Rosanio, Alejandro Barbagelata

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Chronic heart failure (CHF) is associated with frequent hospitalizations and high mortality. It affects more than 5 million individuals in the USA, and another 660,000 new cases are diagnosed each year; overall, heart failure (HF) now accounts for 7% of all deaths from cardiovascular disease. Hypertension (HTN) increases the risk of development of HF and it precedes it in 75% of cases. HF patients are nearly evenly divided between those with reduced left ventricular (LV) function or systolic dysfunction and those with preserved LV systolic function or diastolic dysfunction. The management of HTN in patients with CHF is challenging. Drugs such as β-blockers, angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitiors, angiotensin receptor blockers, aldosterone receptor blockers, hydralazine and nitrates, which have shown mortality benefit in CHF and exert antihypertensive effects, should be used as first-line agents to control HTN in CHF. In addition, antihypertensive drugs such as α-receptor blockers that can increase mortality in HF should be avoided. The dihydropyridine group of calcium channel blockers are good antihypertensive medications with a neutral effect on mortality in patients with CHF. These may be used in CHF patients with refractory HTN. In patients with HF with reduced ejection fraction, HTN is treated differently in comparison to patients with HF with normal ejection fraction. This article reviews the treatment of essential HTN in patients at risk for developing HF, in the presence of HF and the latest developments in treatment that might benefit both HTN and HF management.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)423-433
Number of pages11
JournalExpert Review of Cardiovascular Therapy
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • Congestive
  • Diastolic
  • Dysfunction
  • Heart failure
  • Hypertension
  • Systolic

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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