Short communication| Volume 237, P60-63, June 15, 2017

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Hypertension, left ventricular hypertrophy, and sudden cardiac death


      Hypertension (HTN) is the most common cause of hypertensive heart disease, which comprises of left ventricular hypertrophy (LVH), left atrial enlargement, diastolic dysfunction, functional mitral regurgitation and neurohormonal changes. All of these lead to significant arrhythmias such as atrial fibrillation (AF) as well as ventricular arrhythmias, and are known risk factors for sudden cardiac death (SCD). The association between LVH and SCD is well established, especially in the presence of myocardial ischemia, fibrosis and scar tissue, and AF. Inflammation, fibrosis and oxidative stress, as well as ischemia play a significant role and are the leading pathways to remodeling, arrhythmias, and SCD. Aggressive HTN control may lead, at least in part, to regression of LVH and thus lower the risk of AF and SCD. Therefore, LVH is a powerful, independent predictor of AF, ventricular arrhythmias and SCD, and is significantly underrecognized. Further investigation of the relationship and management of diastolic dysfunction, LVH and genetic factors and their association with SCD is certainly warranted.


      AF (atrial fibrillation), HTN (hypertension), LVH (left ventricular hypertrophy), SCD (sudden cardiac death), VA (ventricular arrhythmia), VF (ventricular fibrillation), VT (ventricular tachycardia)


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