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Prevalence and Risk Factors for Arterial Hypertension Development in Childhood Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia Survivors

Ociepa, Tomasz, MD, PhD; Bartnik, Magdalena, MD; Zielezińska, Karolina, MD; Urasiński, Tomasz, MD, PhD

Journal of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology: April 2019 - Volume 41 - Issue 3 - p 175–180
doi: 10.1097/MPH.0000000000001349
Original Articles

Background: Childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) survivors are at an increased risk of cardiovascular disease including arterial hypertension (AH). The objectives of this study were to assess the prevalence of AH using 24-hour ambulatory blood pressure monitoring, explore characteristics of AH, and define risk factors for the development of AH in childhood ALL survivors.

Patients and Methods: The study comprised 81 childhood ALL survivors (5 to 25 y of age) after a median follow-up time of 5 years. The control group consisted of 52 healthy children (5 to 17 y of age) without any known severe or chronic medical condition. Ambulatory blood pressure monitoring was performed in all patients and controls. Serum lipids were measured in all patients and controls.

Results: ALL survivors were more likely to have AH than controls (odds ratio, 2.47; 95% confidence interval, 1.08-5.63; P=0.0315). The mean time from ALL diagnosis until diagnosis of AH was 5.1±2.97 years. Day-time diastolic SDS and day-time mean arterial pressure SDS were significantly higher in ALL cohort compared with the controls (−0.3±1.43 vs. −0.76±0.95; P=0.04 and 1.44±1.64 vs. 0.92±1.03; P=0.047). Childhood ALL survivors with AH were more likely to be systolic extreme dippers and reverse systolic/diastolic dippers compared with those with normal blood pressure (P<0.05). There was no association of AH with leukemia subtype, leukemia risk group, sex, central nervous system irradiation, and obesity.

Conclusions: The prevalence of AH in childhood ALL survivors may be as high as 37%. We recommend regular monitoring of blood pressure in childhood ALL survivors early in the follow-up.

Department of Pediatrics, Hemato-Oncology, and Gastroenterology, Pomeranian Medical University, Szczecin, Poland

The authors declare no conflict of interest.

Reprints: Tomasz Ociepa, MD, PhD, Department of Pediatrics, Hemato-Oncology, and Gastroenterology, Pomeranian Medical University, ul. Unii Lubelskiej 1, 71-252 Szczecin, Poland (e-mails:;

Received April 18, 2018

Accepted October 20, 2018

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