Vasoconstrictor-Induced Hypertension Following Multiple Blood Transfusions in Children With Congenital Hemolytic Anemia


  • Farahnak Assadi Department of Pediatrics, Section of Nephrology, Rush University Medical Center, Chicago, Illinois, USA Author


Introduction. The mechanism by which blood transfusion increases blood pressure in a substantial proportion of patients with congenital hemolytic anemia is unknown. Vascular endothelium dysfunction and increased endogenous vasoactive substances have been postulated in the pathogenesis of hypertension following multiple blood transfusions. The present study was undertaken to test the hypothesis whether increased circulating vasoconstrictors following blood transfusions, if documented, is a potent modulator of hypertension in patients with congenital anemia.

Materials and Methods. Four children with congenital hemolytic anemia developed severe hypertension and convulsions 2 to 4 days after they received multiple blood transfusions. None had a history of prior hypertension, kidney disease or seizures before the blood transfusion. Baseline blood and urine samples were obtained for routine renal function studies. Blood samples were also drawn during and 2 weeks after the clinical events for determination of epinephrine, norepinephrine, dopamine, and plasma renin activity.

Results. Kidney function was normal in all the 4 patients. All had elevated plasma renin activity and increased blood epinephrine, norepinephrine, and dopamine concentrations during hypertensive crises. Hypertension responded to antihypertensive drugs with the patients remaining normotensive 3 to 6 days after commencing therapy. All recovered without further seizures. The elevated plasma renin activity, epinephrine, norepinephrine, and dopamine levels returned to reference levels 2 weeks after completion of the last blood transfusion.

Conclusions. These data suggest that increased activity of vasoconstrictors in the recipient plasma may be responsible for the development of hypertension after multiple blood transfusions.


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ORIGINAL | Kidney Diseases

How to Cite

Vasoconstrictor-Induced Hypertension Following Multiple Blood Transfusions in Children With Congenital Hemolytic Anemia. (2009). Iranian Journal of Kidney Diseases, 2(3), 132-136.

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