The clearance rate of Na <sup>131</sup>I was measured to assess capillary blood flow in the subcutaneous tissues of the hand and lower leg, as well as in muscle of the forearm and calf, in 21 patients with stage I hypertension and in normotensive controls. Hypertensive subjects exhibited a significantly slower clearance of the tracer from subcutaneous tissues than controls, both at rest and during vasomotor reactions. Clearance from forearm muscle was more rapid in hypertensives than in controls, but the opposite prevailed for clearance from the muscles of the lower extremities. In normal subjects, clearance of <sup>131</sup>I from the subcutaneous tissue and muscle of the leg was significantly slower than clearance from corresponding tissues of the upper extremity. This difference was even more pronounced in the hypertensive group.