Frantz S; Lührs H;
Allolio B; Koller ML
Medizinische Universitätsklinik Würzburg, Josef-Schneider-Str. 2, 97080 Würzburg, Germany. email@example.com
The baroreflex mechanism is a central part of the regulation of the cardiovascular system, particularly in the control of vagal and sympathetic outflow to the heart and the peripheral circulation. Failure of the baroreflex is a rare cause of secondary hypertension. It is characterized by drastic changes in sympathetic activation and blood pressure following complete denervation of the baroreflex. Here, we report a case of baroreflex failure following bilateral carotid artery surgery and radiation. Moreover, postoperative orthostatic hypotension with recurrent syncope suggests a rare subform, the selective baroreflex failure, where efferent parasympathetic activity is preserved. Both high blood pressure and orthostatically induced syncope improved substantially after treatment with clonidine.