Recently, attention has focused on the effects of calcium antagonists on renal function. When administered in vitro to the isolated perfused kidney, calcium antagonists exhibit predictable actions allowing for characterization of their renal effects. Calcium antagonists do not affect the vasodilated isolated perfused kidney; however, they do dramatically alter the response of the kidney to vasoconstrictor agents. In the presence of norepinephrine, calcium antagonists markedly augment the glomerular filtration rate but produce only a modest improvement in renal perfusion. A study using the postischemic hydronephrotic rat kidney model that permits direct visualization of afferent and efferent arterioles, this study demonstrated that this preferential augmentation of the glomerular filtration rate is primarily attributable to a selective vasodilation of pre-glomerular vessels. Although the clinical implications of such observations are not yet clear, preliminary studies in experimental animal models indicate that calcium antagonists might exert salutary effects on renal function in clinical settings characterized by impaired renal hemodynamics. The possible benefits of calcium antagonists in ameliorating the development of renal dysfunction in patients in whom there is increased risk of acute renal insufficiency remain to be evaluated.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine