Effect of intensive blood pressure lowering on left atrial remodeling in the SPRINT

Hypertens Res. 2021 Oct;44(10):1326-1331. doi: 10.1038/s41440-021-00713-2. Epub 2021 Aug 6.


Upstream therapy of atrial remodeling may decrease atrial fibrillation and associated thromboembolism. We examined the impact of intensive BP lowering on ECG-defined left atrial abnormalities in the SPRINT. SPRINT was a randomized clinical trial comparing outcomes when a systolic BP of <120 mmHg (standard treatment) was the target. We included SPRINT participants without baseline atrial fibrillation who had a technically interpretable baseline ECG and at least one follow-up ECG. The primary outcome was incident left atrial abnormality, defined as P-wave terminal force in V1 (PTFV1) > 4000 μV × ms. Secondary outcomes were regression of the left atrial abnormality and the change in PTFV1 from baseline across follow-up ECGs. Cox regression was used to examine the associations between treatment assignment and incident left atrial abnormality and its regression. We used linear mixed models to examine the changes in PTFV1. Of 9361 SPRINT participants, 7738 qualified for this analysis, of whom 5544 did not have baseline left atrial abnormalities. Intensive BP management was not associated with incident left atrial abnormality (HR, 0.96; 95% CI, 0.87-1.07) or regression of the baseline left atrial abnormality (HR, 1.09; 95% CI, 0.98-1.21). The change in PTFV1 from baseline through follow-up did not differ significantly between treatment groups (difference in μV × ms per year, 6; 95% CI, -67 to 79). Thus, among patients in a randomized clinical trial, we found no difference in the progression or regression of ECG-defined left atrial abnormalities with intensive BP management compared to standard BP management.

Keywords: Atrial cardiomyopathy; Atrial remodeling; Blood pressure; Hypertension.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Antihypertensive Agents / therapeutic use
  • Atrial Fibrillation* / drug therapy
  • Atrial Remodeling*
  • Blood Pressure
  • Electrocardiography
  • Humans
  • Hypertension* / drug therapy
  • Risk Factors


  • Antihypertensive Agents