Objectives: To determine whether children with white coat hypertension (WCH) have evidence of target-organ damage by comparing the left ventricular mass index (LVMI) of subjects with WCH with that of matched normotensive and hypertensive controls.
Study design: Each subject in the WCH group was matched by body mass index (BMI; +/- 10%), age (+/- 1 year), and sex to a normotensive control and a hypertensive control. Echocardiograms were reviewed to determine the LVMI for each subject. These triple matches were analyzed using repeated-measures analysis of variance to detect differences in LVMI among the 3 groups.
Results: A total of 27 matched triplets were established. The groups were comparable for sex, age, and BMI. Mean LVMI was 29.2 g/m(2.7) for the normotensive group, 32.3 g/m(2.7) for the WCH group, and 35.1 g/m(2.7) for the sustained hypertensive group (normotensive vs WCH, P = .028; WCH vs sustained hypertension, P = .07). Left ventricular hypertrophy was not present in any subject in the normotensive or WCH groups, but was found in 26% of the sustained hypertensive subjects (P < .001).
Conclusions: After controlling closely for BMI, the LVMI in the subjects with WCH was between that of the normotensives and sustained hypertensives, suggesting that WCH may be associated with hypertensive end-organ effects.