Liddle syndrome is a rare hereditary disorder in which the kidneys excrete potassium but retain too much sodium and water, leading to high blood pressure.
The gene that causes Liddle syndrome is dominant, meaning that children of a person with the disorder have a 50% chance of inheriting the defective gene. The disorder does not always cause symptoms. When it does, symptoms such as high blood pressure often begin during childhood. Some people have low levels of potassium in the blood.
The condition is effectively treated by drugs that increase sodium excretion and lessen potassium excretion, such as triamterene or amiloride. These drugs effectively lower the blood pressure. The prognosis is very good.
Last full review/revision December 2006 by Peter C. Brazy, MD