Pediatric renovascular hypertension occurs when low blood flow to the kidneys causes high blood pressure (hypertension). It is the third most-common form of hypertension in children, second to renal (kidney) artery occlusive lesions (complete blockage of blood flow through one or both of the main arteries to the kidneys or its branches), and midaortic syndrome, also known as abdominal aortic coarctation. (This is a very rare condition in which part of the aorta — the heart's largest blood vessel — becomes narrow).
What are the symptoms of pediatric renovascular hypertension?
Patients typically do not show symptoms though headache, visual changes and failure to thrive are sometimes associated. Without treatment, serious complications may occur, including heart enlargement, heart failure, kidney dysfunction and neurologic complications such as stroke.
It’s unclear why children develop this condition. But some syndromes are known to be commonly associated with it, including:
- Neurofibromatosis type I (NF1): a genetic condition characterized by changes in skin coloring and tumors along nerves in the skin, brain and other parts of the body
- Alagille syndrome: a genetic disorder that can affect the liver, heart and other parts of the body
- Moyamoya disease: a rare, progressive cerebrovascular disorder caused by blocked arteries at the base of the brain
- Williams syndrome: a developmental disorder characterized by mild to moderate intellectual disability or learning problems, unique personality characteristics, distinctive facial features, and heart and blood vessel problems
Conditions treated in the Pediatric Renovascular Hypertension Program
There are several conditions treated within the Pediatric Renovascular Hypertension Program. Specific diagnoses include:
- Renal artery stenosis
- Midaortic syndrome (abdominal aortic coarctation)
- Arterial aneurysms
- Lower extremity arterial disease
- Intestinal artery (mesenteric) arterial disease