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Higher Albuminuria Levels Associated with Hypertension

In women without diabetes, high 'normal' albumin/creatinine ratio predicts hypertension

MONDAY, June 30 (HealthDay News) -- Having a higher albumin/creatinine ratio -- even if it's in the range considered "normal" -- is associated with an increased risk of incident hypertension in women without diabetes, according to a report published online June 25 in the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology.

John P. Forman, M.D., of Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston, and colleagues analyzed data from 1,065 older (postmenopausal) women in the first Nurses' Health Study and 1,114 younger (premenopausal) women in the second Nurses' Health Study. All were free of hypertension and diabetes at time of urine collection, and had an albumin/creatinine ratio (ACR) below 25 mg/g. Among the older women, 271 developed hypertension during four years of follow-up; in the younger women, 296 developed hypertension during eight years of follow-up.

The researchers found that, in the older group of women, subjects with an ACR in the highest quartile (4.34 to 24.17 mg/g) were more likely to develop hypertension than those in the lowest quartile (hazard ratio, 1.76). Younger women showed a similar trend, the report indicates.

"In conclusion, variations within the normal range of albumin excretion are associated with the development of hypertension, which is a major cause of cardiovascular morbidity and mortality. The findings of this study, in conjunction with the findings of numerous others, including the Framingham Heart Study, HOPE, and LIFE, suggest that it may be time to reevaluate our current concept of 'normal' albumin excretion," the authors write.

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