Secondary Hypertension Overview and Workup for the Primary Care Physician

Med Clin North Am. 2023 Jul;107(4):739-747. doi: 10.1016/j.mcna.2023.03.010. Epub 2023 Apr 18.


Secondary hypertension occurs in 5% to 10% of all patients with hypertension. Given the majority of patients with hypertension will not have a secondary cause, only select patients with specific characteristics should be screened. The causes include a range of abnormalities, some are quite rare, such as pheochromocytoma, while others are much more common, such as chronic kidney disease. When considering which disorders to test for, it is important to incorporate the clinical history, family history, and prevalence of each disease. Treatment is specific to the underlying cause and includes medications, procedures, surgery, and device therapies.

Keywords: Catecholamine-secreting tumors; Coarctation of the aorta; Primary hyperaldosteronism; Renovascular hypertension; Secondary hypertension.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adrenal Gland Neoplasms* / complications
  • Adrenal Gland Neoplasms* / diagnosis
  • Adrenal Gland Neoplasms* / therapy
  • Humans
  • Hyperaldosteronism*
  • Hypertension* / diagnosis
  • Hypertension* / epidemiology
  • Hypertension* / therapy
  • Pheochromocytoma* / complications
  • Pheochromocytoma* / diagnosis
  • Pheochromocytoma* / therapy
  • Physicians, Primary Care*