Effects of heparin-induced aldosterone deficiency on renal function in patients with chronic glomerulonephritis

Nephrol Dial Transplant. 1987;2(4):219-23.


The effects of heparin-induced aldosterone deficiency on renal sodium and potassium transport and renal function were studied in 65 patients with chronic glomerulonephritis and initial hyperaldosteronism. Heparin-induced aldosterone deficiency resulted in increased diuresis, in natriuresis due to decreased sodium reabsorption in the distal nephron, in a fall in serum sodium and an increase in serum potassium concentration. A transient reduction in potassium excretion occurred during the 2-4 days of heparin treatment. In patients with chronic glomerulonephritis and a compromised renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system, heparin may cause drug-induced selective hypoaldosteronism. The suppressive effect of heparin on aldosterone production was partially compensated for by increasing plasma renin activity. Heparin-induced aldosterone deficiency did not change glomerular filtration rate in patients without renal failure. In those with chronic sclerosing glomerulonephritis and a glomerular filtration rate less than 35 ml/min, heparin caused a further decrease in renal function.

MeSH terms

  • Aldosterone / blood
  • Aldosterone / deficiency*
  • Blood Pressure / drug effects
  • Glomerular Filtration Rate / drug effects
  • Glomerulonephritis / physiopathology*
  • Heparin / pharmacology*
  • Humans
  • Hyperaldosteronism / physiopathology*
  • Kidney Failure, Chronic / physiopathology
  • Kidney Function Tests*
  • Renin / blood
  • Renin-Angiotensin System / drug effects
  • Urodynamics / drug effects
  • Water-Electrolyte Balance / drug effects


  • Aldosterone
  • Heparin
  • Renin