Hypertension tied to cardiac injury in COVID-19 patients

24 Nov 2021
130/80 home BP equivalent to clinic BP for stage 1 hypertension

In patients with the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), hypertension aggravates the risk of cardiac injury and severe disease phenotype, a recent study has found.

The study included 388 COVID-19 patients (mean age 47.5±15.2 years, 50.8 percent men), of whom 75 had hypertension, while the remaining 313 were set as normotensive controls. Cardiac injury was assessed according to biomarkers, such as creatine kinase (CK), CK-myocardial band (CK-MB), myoglobin, and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH).

Compared to normotensive controls, patients with hypertension showed significantly higher levels of markers. Moreover, correlation analysis revealed a significant link between systolic blood pressure and CK (R, 0.124; p=0.01) and LDH (R, 0.103; p=0.05). Diastolic blood pressure, on the other hand, was moderately associated with myoglobin (R, 0.113; p=0.06) and LDH (R, 0.089; p=0.09).

Logistic regression analysis further confirmed that hypertension was significantly associated with cardiac injury markers such as CK-MB (odds ratio [OR], 2.50, 95 percent confidence interval [CI], 0.98–6.39; p=0.05) and LDH (OR, 2.64, 95 percent CI, 1.53–4.57; p=0.001). Such interactions with CK and myoglobin failed to reach significant (p=0.59 and p=0.14, respectively).

“To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report providing comprehensive information on epidemiological, demographic, clinical, laboratory, and radiological characteristics of hospitalized COVID-19 patients in the context of hypertension and ensuing myocardial damage,” the researchers said.

“Our results specifically highlighted a significant association between hypertension and cardiac injury in COVID-19 patients,” they added, suggesting that effective blood pressure control could help improve COVID-19 outcomes.

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