Definition of high blood pressure
What to do in case of hypertension?
For a better understanding of blood pressure The follow-up of a high blood pressure
High blood pressure damage High blood pressure and special cases
Why does high blood pressure exist? The self-measurement of blood pressure
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IV - Why does high blood pressure exist?

4.1 - Most of the time, there is no explanation for this high blood pressure
But sometimes a disease is responsible for hypertension:
the secondary arterial hypertensions

4.2 - The medical procedure
4.3 - Causes
        4.3.1 - Drugs
        4.3.2 - An hormonal disorder

        4.3.3 - High blood pressure induced by the kidney
        4.3.4 - A rare cause: presence of an obstacle in the aorta

4.3.2 - A hormonal disorder


1 - An increase in the secretion of adrenalin by the suprarenal glands (located above the kidneys), in particular the medullo-suprarenal glands, can be responsible for a high blood pressure: this disease is called phéochromocytoma. High blood pressure occurs in a sudden way, is generally accompanied by flushes, rednesses of the face, and by hypotensive episodes.

Blood and urine tests reveal a high quantity of adrenalin. The abdominal scanner can highlight the mass secreting adrenalin in the suprarenal gland.

The treatment of the phéochromocytoma is surgical, extracting the mass from the suprarenal gland.

2 -
An increase in the quantity of cortisol secretion by the suprarenal gland ("cortico-suprarenal") can also be responsible for a high blood pressure. This exaggerated cortisol secretion is accompanied by obesity, anomalies of the skin (thin skin with an anomaly of the pigmentation, stretch marks), and fatigue.

The high quantity of cortisol can be highlighted by a blood test, and the suprarenal mass is found on the abdominal scanner.

Its treatment is also surgical, it consists of extracting this mass from the suprarenal gland.

3 -
An increase of the secretion of the aldosterone by the suprarenal gland can also be responsible for a high blood pressure.

This high secretion of aldosterone involves the whole of the suprarenal gland, cortico and medullo-suprarenal, and is explained by a hypertrophy of the suprarenals glands or a mass called Conn adenoma.

The only symptom is a high blood pressure, and the diagnosis of this disease will be made by the blood test, which shows a high quantity of aldosterone. The abdominal scanner shows the hypertrophy or the adenoma of the suprarenal glands.

The treatment of the adenoma is surgical, whereas the treatment of the hyperplasy is medical and involves using a product on the aldosterone, the spironolactone, which is prescribed by pills over a long time.

- More rarely, arterial hypertension is due to the inappropriate secretion of the growth hormone.

Classically, the patients are tall and have a deformation of the face and of the hands. The diagnosis is carried out by the blood test which highlights a high rate of growth hormone in the blood.

File last reviewed on : 18 dec 2011
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