Primary aldosteronism is the most frequent cause of secondary hypertension, accounting for up to 11% of cases in selected populations. Patients affected by primary aldosteronism have shown higher prevalence of cardiovascular and cerebrovascular events compared with patients with essential hypertension, despite similar blood pressure levels. Several studies have been performed over past years aiming to explain these data; many of these evaluated echocardiographic differences in hypertension-related cardiac organ damage between primary aldosteronism and essential hypertension. This article summarizes the present knowledge about structural and functional alteration of the human left heart in primary aldosteronism.
Received for publication 5 January 2012; accepted for publication 2 February 2012.