In 37 patients with coarctation of the aorta, arterial blood pressure and ambulant plasma renin activity (PRA) were determined before and, in 15 patients, after surgical correction. The systolic blood pressure was raised in all the cases and the diastolic pressure was raised in 30 patients. Ambulant PRA was increased in 11 patients when compared with normal subjects of similar age. Twelve of the 15 operated patients had a significant decrease of systolic pressure after operation. Eight had raised PRA, and in 7 of these PRA fell to normal after operation and the blood pressure also fell; in 1 patient the decrease of PRA was unaccompanied by a fall in blood pressure. Though there was no significant correlation between the changes in blood pressure and PRA after operation it seems possible from our results that the renin-angiotensin system may be activated and contribute to the raised arterial pressure which occurs in patients with aortic coarctation.
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