1. In a double-blind, randomized, cross-over study the effects of potassium canrenoate administration (100 mg twice daily for 10 days orally) on renal prostaglandin synthesis (prostaglandin E2 and prostaglandin F) were evaluated in 10 normotensive females and in 10 females with essential hypertension.

2. When compared with normotensive subjects, hypertensive patients in baseline conditions showed a reduced excretion of urinary prostaglandin E2 associated with an excessive prostaglandin F production.

3. Potassium canrenoate significantly reduced mean blood pressure in hypertensive patients [from 118.9 ± 8.7 mmHg (1.62 ± 0.12 kPa) to a peak minimum value of 104.7 ± 9.8 mmHg (1.42 ± 0.13 kPa) on the seventh day of treatment; P < 0.01 for the whole period] but not in control subjects [from 88 ± 9.4 mmHg (1.20 ± 0.13 kPa) to 84.3 ± 8.3 mmHg (1.15 ± 0.11 kPa) on the eighth day, NS] even though potassium canrenoate significantly increased sodium excretion in both groups. Renal prostaglandin excretion was affected differently in the two groups: in control subjects excretion of both prostaglandin E2 and prostaglandin F was increased after drug administration, whereas in hypertensive patients only prostaglandin E2 excretion was enhanced.

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