[Skip to Navigation]
August 2016

Mineralocorticoid Receptor Antagonists in the Management of Heart Failure and Resistant Hypertension: A Review

Author Affiliations
  • 1Division of Cardiovascular Diseases, University of Tennessee Health Science Center, Memphis
JAMA Cardiol. 2016;1(5):607-612. doi:10.1001/jamacardio.2016.1878

Importance  Heart failure (HF), with or without reduced ejection fraction, and multidrug-resistant hypertension (RHT) are major worldwide health problems of ever-increasing proportions. The mineralocorticoid receptor antagonists (MRAs) spironolactone and eplerenone have proved valuable additions to the overall management of these disorders in patients without significant renal dysfunction.

Observations  Neurohormonal activation, including aldosteronism, in HF and RHT, has provided the pathophysiologic basis for the inclusion of MRA in the overall management of these disorders and the respective survival benefit and control of blood pressure. Furthermore, MRAs attenuate the appearance of secondary hyperparathyroidism that accompanies excretory Ca2+ losses induced by aldosteronism in which elevated parathyroid hormone levels raise the risk of adverse cardiovascular events and atraumatic bone fracture. Serial surveillance of serum electrolytes and creatinine levels is mandated to avoid serious hyperkalemia (potassium concentration >5.5 mEq/L) and its attendant risks in patients receiving MRAs.

Conclusions and Relevance  Mineralocorticoid receptor antagonists are a valuable addition to the practice of medicine. Their judicious use in patients with HF or RHT can improve treatment of these patients.

Add or change institution