Obesity and hypertension

Pharmacol Res. 2017 Aug:122:1-7. doi: 10.1016/j.phrs.2017.05.013. Epub 2017 May 19.


Obesity and in particular the excessive visceral fat distribution is accompanied by several alterations at hormonal, inflammatory and endothelial level. These alterations induce a stimulation of several other mechanisms that contribute to the hypertensive state and on the other side to increase the cardiovascular morbidity. In these chapter we will examine the main mechanisms of obesity and obesity-related hypertension and in particular the role of sympathetic nervous system, the alterations of the renal function and at the microvascular level. We will also depict the role of insulin resistance as factor stimulating and potentiating the other mechanisms. The second part will be focalized on the major target organ damage linked with obesity and obesity-related hypertension. We will finally describe the management and treatment of obesity and the antihypertensive drug therapies more effective in hypertensive obeses.

Keywords: Cardiovascular risk; Hypertension; Pathophysiological mechanisms; Target organ damage; Treatment; Visceral fat distribution.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Anti-Obesity Agents / therapeutic use
  • Arteries / drug effects
  • Arteries / physiopathology
  • Bariatric Surgery / methods
  • Diet Therapy / methods
  • Heart / drug effects
  • Heart / physiopathology
  • Humans
  • Hypertension / etiology*
  • Hypertension / physiopathology*
  • Hypertension / therapy
  • Hypoglycemic Agents / therapeutic use
  • Life Style
  • Obesity / complications*
  • Obesity / physiopathology*
  • Obesity / therapy


  • Anti-Obesity Agents
  • Hypoglycemic Agents