Lege Artis Medicinae

[NEUROVASCULAR COMPRESSION IN THE MEDULLA OBLONGATA AS A CAUSE OF RESISTANT HYPERTENSION - THOUGHTS APROPOS OF A PATIENT]

KOVÁTS László, BRETUS Angelika, CSUTAK Kinga, NAGY Gyöngyi, GASZTONYI Beáta

NOVEMBER 20, 2007

Lege Artis Medicinae - 2007;17(11)

[INTRODUCTION - The vasomotor centre, the central regulator of the cardiovascular system, is localised in the rostral ventrolateral medulla oblongata. Irritation of this area and/or of the ninth and tenth cranial nerves (that are involved both in the afferent and efferent pathways of the baroreceptor reflex) causes sympathetic hyperactivity, which in some cases leads to severe resistant hypertension. A common underlying cause of this is pulsatile neurovascular compression, a vascular malformation rarely sought for. CASE REPORT - The authors present the case of a middle-aged woman with what had been considered “essential” hypertension. Magnetic resonance angiography showed vascular compression of the medulla oblongata and the departing left ninth and tenth cranial nerves as the cause of her hypertension. CONCLUSIONS - After a literature review the authors draw the attention to this rarely identified cause of resistant hypertension and to the difficulties of its diagnosis.]

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