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Relationship between arterial stiffness and heart rate recovery in apparently healthy adults

Authors Ding-Yu Fei, Ross Arena, James A Arrowood, Kenneth A Kraft

Published 15 April 2005 Volume 2005:1(1) Pages 85—89

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Ding-Yu Fei1, Ross Arena2, James A Arrowood3, Kenneth A Kraft4

1Department of Biomedical Engineering, 2Department of Physical Therapy, 3Department of Internal Medicine, Division of Cardiology, 4Department of Radiology, Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA, USA

Introduction: Arterial stiffness and heart rate recovery (HRR) following exercise testing have emerged as variables holding significant prognostic value in a number of populations. The purpose of the present study is to examine the relationship between arterial stiffness and HRR in a group of apparently healthy subjects.

Methods: Two hundred and nine apparently healthy subjects underwent maximal exercise testing. Heart rate at one and two minutes post exercise was subtracted from maximal heart rate during the exercise test to produce two measures of heart rate recovery. Aortic wave velocity, in meters per second, was obtained via a new magnetic resonance technique.

Results: Pearson Product Moment Correlation analysis revealed a significant correlation between aortic wave velocity and heart rate recovery. Stepwise linear regression analysis revealed that age, maximal aerobic capacity, heart rate recovery at one minute, and diastolic blood pressure were all significant predictors of aortic wave velocity (r = 0.63, r2 = 0.40, p < 0.001).

Conclusions: The results of the present study indicate that heart rate recovery is significantly correlated with a measure of large artery stiffness and adds predictive value to other clinical variables. This analysis provides further evidence that assessment of heart rate recovery should be considered in subjects undergoing exercise testing in clinical practice.

Keywords: exercise testing, oxygen consumption, aortic wave velocity

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