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      The Effect of Body Position on Measures of Arterial Stiffness in Humans

      , , *

      Journal of Vascular Research

      S. Karger AG

      Arterial stiffness, Blood pressure, Posture

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          Background: The dynamics ofpulsatile waveforms travelling the central aorta are governed by pressures and arterial compliance. Arterial stiffness, the inverse of compliance, is an independent risk factor for cardiovascular disease and has been suggested as a superior risk index compared to brachial blood pressure (BP). Arterial stiffness is typically measured via carotid-femoral pulse wave velocity (cfPWV) in the supine position; however, different body positions alter orthostatic column height, impacting heart rate and BP. The purpose of this investigation was to examine different body positions and associated measures of cfPWV. Methods: Measures of resting cfPWV were acquired simultaneously with BP during supine, head-up tilt (HUT), head-down tilt (HDT), and Fowler’s position, all at 45 degrees from vertical. Results: Relative to supine, cfPWV was increased 1.1 ± 1.0 and 1.5 ± 1.1 m/s (both p ≤ 0.001) in HUT and Fowler’s positions, respectively. Supine to HDT cfPWV was unaltered ( p = 0.1), despite an increase in mean arterial pressure (MAP) (10 ± 9 mm Hg). When cfPWV was normalized to MAP, the same effects persisted ( p ≤ 0.001). Conclusion: Increasing orthostatic column height by changing posture independently increases resting cfPWV, concurrent with increases in BP. This data demonstrates the impact of body position on measures of central artery stiffness, which may have clinical relevance.

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          Most cited references 23

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          Comparison of finger and intra-arterial blood pressure monitoring at rest and during laboratory testing.

          The accuracy of blood pressure values obtained by continuous noninvasive finger blood pressure recording via the FINAPRES device was evaluated by comparison with simultaneous intraarterial monitoring both at rest and during performance of tests known to induce fast and often marked changes in blood pressure. The comparison was performed in 24 normotensive or essential hypertensive subjects. The average discrepancy between finger and intra-arterial blood pressure recorded over a 30-minute rest period was 6.5 +/- 2.6 mm Hg and 5.4 +/- 2.9 mm Hg for systolic and diastolic blood pressure, respectively; a close between-method correspondence was also demonstrated by linear regression analysis. The beat-to-beat changes in finger systolic and diastolic blood pressure were on average similar to those measured intra-arterially during tests that induced a pressor or depressor response (hand-grip, cold pressor test, diving test, Valsalva maneuver, intravenous injections of phenylephrine and trinitroglycerine) as well as during tests that caused vasomotor changes without major variations in blood pressure (application of lower body negative pressure, passive leg raising). The average between-method discrepancy in the evaluation of blood pressure changes was never greater than 4.3 and 2.0 mm Hg for systolic and diastolic blood pressure, respectively; the corresponding standard deviations ranged between 4.6 and 1.6 mm Hg. Beat-to-beat computer analysis of blood pressure variability over the 30-minute rest period provided standard deviations almost identical when calculated by separate consideration of intra-arterial and finger blood pressure tracings (3.7 and 3.8 mm Hg, respectively).(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)
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            Sex and ageing differences in resting arterial pressure regulation: the role of the β-adrenergic receptors.

            In men, muscle sympathetic nerve activity (MSNA) is positively related to total peripheral resistance (TPR) and inversely related to cardiac output (CO). However, this relationship was not observed in young women. We aimed to investigate whether simultaneous β-adrenergic stimulation offsets this balance in young women. Furthermore, we aimed to examine whether the ability of the β-adrenergic receptors to offset the transduction of MSNA into vasoconstrictor tone was lost in postmenopausal women. We measured MSNA (peroneal microneurography), arterial pressure (brachial line), CO (Modelflow), TPR and changes in forearm vascular conductance (FVC) to increasing doses of noradrenaline (NA; 2, 4 and 8 ng (100 ml)(-1) min(-1)) before and after systemic β-blockade with propranolol in 17 young men, 17 young women and 15 postmenopausal (PM) women. The percentage and absolute change in FVC to the last two doses of NA were greater during β-blockade in young women (P 0.05). Before β-blockade there was no relationship of MSNA to TPR or mean arterial pressure (MAP) in young women. Following β-blockade, MSNA became positively related to TPR (r = 0.59, P < 0.05) and MAP (r = 0.58, P < 0.05). In the PM women and young men, MSNA was positively associated with TPR. β-Blockade had no effect on this relationship. Our data suggest that the β-adrenergic receptors offset α-adrenergic vasoconstriction in young women but not young men or PM women. These findings may explain in part the tendency for blood pressure to rise after menopause in women.
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              An independent relationship between muscle sympathetic nerve activity and pulse wave velocity in normal humans.

              Carotid-femoral pulse wave velocity (PWV) has been shown to be a powerful predictor of cardiovascular morbidity and mortality. Sympathetic neural mechanisms may have a stiffening influence on arterial mechanical properties. The relationship between direct measures of sympathetic traffic and PWV in healthy humans has not been previously studied. We, therefore, tested the hypothesis that PWV is independently linked to muscle sympathetic nerve activity (MSNA) in normal individuals. We measured MSNA (microneurography), PWV (Complior device), heart rate and blood pressure in 25 healthy male participants (mean age 43 +/- 10 years). PWV correlated significantly with age (r = 0.63, P < 0.001), SBP (r = 0.43, P < 0.05) and MSNA (r = 0.43, P < 0.05) but not with BMI, waist circumference, waist-to-hip ratio, heart rate, pulse pressure or DBP. Robust multiple linear regression analysis revealed that only age and MSNA were linked independently to PWV (r2 = 0.62, P < 0.001), explaining 39 and 25% of its variance, respectively. After adjustment of PWV for age and SBP, we further divided individuals into 'excessive' PWV (i.e. higher than expected from age and SBP) and 'optimal' PWV (i.e. lower than expected). BMI and blood pressure were similar in both subgroups. Individuals with excessive PWV had significantly greater MSNA than individuals with optimal PWV (30 +/- 10 vs. 18 +/- 11 bursts/min, P = 0.01). This study provides the first evidence that PWV is linked to MSNA in normal humans. The relationship between MSNA and PWV is independent of age, BMI, waist circumference, waist-to-hip ratio, heart rate, pulse pressure or blood pressure.

                Author and article information

                J Vasc Res
                Journal of Vascular Research
                S. Karger AG
                May 2020
                01 April 2020
                : 57
                : 3
                : 143-151
                Human Performance and Health Research Laboratory, University of Guelph, Guelph, Ontario, Canada
                Author notes
                *Dr. Jamie Burr, Human Performance and Health Research Laboratory, University of Guelph, 50 Stone Road East, Guelph, ON N1G 2W1 (Canada), burrj@uoguelph.ca
                506351 J Vasc Res 2020;57:143–151
                © 2020 S. Karger AG, Basel

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                Page count
                Figures: 4, Tables: 2, Pages: 9
                Research Article


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