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Epidemiology, Pathophysiology, and Clinical Perspectives of Intradialytic Hypertension.

BACKGROUND: Individuals with end-stage renal disease on chronic hemodialysis (HD) may encounter numerous HD-associated complications, including intradialytic hypertension (IDHYPER). Although blood pressure (BP) follows a predictable course in the post-HD period, BP levels during the session may vary across the individuals. Typically, a decline in BP is noted during HD, but a significant proportion of patients exhibit a paradoxical elevation.

SUMMARY: Several studies have been conducted to understand the complexity of IDHYPER, but much remains to be elucidated in the future. This review article aimed to present the current evidence regarding the proposed definitions, the pathophysiologic background, the extent and clinical implications of IDHYPER, as well as the possible therapeutic options that have emerged from clinical studies.

KEY MESSAGES: IDHYPER is noted in approximately 15% of individuals undergoing HD. Several definitions have been proposed, with a systolic BP rise >10 mm Hg from pre- to post-dialysis in the hypertensive range in at least four out of six consecutive HD treatments being suggested by the latest Kidney Disease: Improving Global Outcomes. Concerning its pathophysiology, extracellular fluid overload is a crucial determinant, with endothelial dysfunction, sympathetic nervous system overdrive, renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system activation, and electrolyte alterations being important contributors. Although its association with ambulatory BP in the interdialytic period is controversial, IDHYPER is associated with adverse cardiovascular events and mortality. Moving to its management, the antihypertensive drugs of choice should ideally be nondialyzable with proven cardiovascular and mortality benefits. Finally, rigorous clinical and objective assessment of extracellular fluid volume is essential. Volume-overloaded patients should be instructed about the importance of sodium restriction, while physicians ought to alter HD settings toward a greater dry weight reduction. The use of a low-sodium dialysate and isothermic HD could also be considered on a case-by-case basis since no randomized evidence is currently available.

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