Background: In some hypertensive patients, psychological stress makes blood pressure difficult to control and causes physical symptoms such as headache or dizziness. We report the case of a hypertensive man whose psychological stress-induced increase in blood pressure was attenuated by cilnidipine. Case Presentation: The patient (a 72-year-old man) had hypertension and was on antihypertensive therapy. When mentally concentrating, he experienced occipital headaches and dizziness, and despite thorough testing, no abnormality was found. He was subsequently referred to our department. The mirror drawing test (MDT), a psychological stress test, increased blood pressure by about 40 mmHg, and the patient described occipital headache. Plasma noradrenaline level also increased from 212 to 548 pg/ml. We therefore switched the patient from nifedipine, an L-type calcium (Ca) channel blocker, to cilnidipine, an L-type/N-type Ca channel blocker with suppressive effects on sympathetic activity. Cilnipidine attenuated MDT-induced an increase in blood pressure and plasma noradrenaline level and prevented the development of headache during testing. Conclusion: These findings suggest that cilnidipine is a useful antihypertensive agent for hypertensive patients in whom psychological stress causes marked fluctuations in blood pressure.
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