The Potential Role of Primary Care in Case Detection/Screening of Primary Aldosteronism
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Endocrine hypertension, particularly primary aldosteronism (PA), was previously considered to account for less than 1% of all hypertension and was suspected only when patients presented with spontaneous hypokalemia. However, the last 20 years of PA research has now clearly shown that PA is not a rarity, but rather, may account for up to 13% of unselected hypertensive individuals and between 10% and 20% of those with resistant hypertension. Most of these patients do not have spontaneous hypokalemia. The population prevalence of PA likely far exceeds actual detection rates in routine clinical care. As PA represents one of the most common, potentially reversible causes of hypertension, and is associated with significant cardiovascular complications over the long term, it is clear that a pragmatic strategy for targeted case detection in primary care is needed.
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