Objective. In this study, we have assessed sympathovagal imbalance (SVI) by spectral analysis of heart rate variability (HRV) that contributes to the genesis of early-onset PIH.
Methods. Body mass index (BMI), basal heart rate (BHR), blood pressure (BP) and HRV indices such as LFnu, HFnu, LF-HF ratio, mean RR, SDNN and RMSSD were assessed in normal pregnant women (Control group) and pregnant women having risk factors for PIH (Study group) at all the trimesters pregnancy. Retrospectively, those who did not develop PIH (Study group I) were separated from those who developed PIH (Study group II). Study group II was subdivided into early-onset and late-onset PIH. Sympathovagal balance (LF-HF ratio) was correlated with BMI, BHR and BP.
Results. LF-HF ratio was significantly high in study group II compared to study group I and control group, and in early-onset PIH group compared to the late-onset category at all the trimesters of pregnancy, which was significantly correlated with BHR and BP. Alteration in HFnu in early-onset category was more prominent than the alteration in LFnu.
Conclusion. Though the SVI in PIH is contributed by both sympathetic overactivity and vagal withdrawal, especially in early-onset type, SVI is mainly due to vagal inhibition.
Objective. Though prehypertension has strong familial predisposition, difference in pathophysiological mechanisms in its genesis in offspring of both parents and single parent hypertensive have not been elucidated. Methods. Body mass index (BMI), waist-hip ratio (WHR), basal heart rate (BHR), blood pressure (BP), HR and BP response to standing, deep breathing difference, BP response to handgrip and spectral indices of heart rate variability (HRV) were analyzed in normotensive offspring of two parents hypertensive (Group I), normotensive offspring of one parent hypertensive (Group II), prehypertensive offspring of two parents hypertensive (Group III) and prehypertensive offspring of one parent hypertensive (Group IV). Results. Sympathovagal imbalance (SVI) in prehypertensive offspring was observed due to increased sympathetic and decreased vagal activity. In group III, SVI was more prominent with greater contribution by vagal withdrawal. LF-HF ratio, the marker of SVI was correlated more with diastolic pressure, 30 : 15 ratio and E : I ratio in prehypertensives and the degree of correlation was more in group III prehypertensives. Conclusion. Vagal withdrawal plays a critical role in development of SVI in prehypertensive offspring of hypertensive parents. The intensity of SVI was more in offspring of two parents hypertensive compared to single parent hypertensive.
Though cardiovascular (CV) risks are reported in first-degree relatives (FDR) of type 2 diabetics, the pathophysiological mechanisms contributing to these risks are not known. We investigated the association of sympathovagal imbalance (SVI) with CV risks in these subjects.
Subjects and Methods
Body mass index (BMI), basal heart rate (BHR), blood pressure (BP), rate-pressure product (RPP), spectral indices of heart rate variability (HRV), autonomic function tests, insulin resistance (HOMA-IR), lipid profile, inflammatory markers, oxidative stress (OS) marker, rennin, thyroid profile and serum electrolytes were measured and analyzed in subjects of study group (FDR of type 2 diabetics, n = 72) and control group (subjects with no family history of diabetes, n = 104).
BMI, BP, BHR, HOMA-IR, lipid profile, inflammatory and OS markers, renin, LF-HF (ratio of low-frequency to high-frequency power of HRV, a sensitive marker of SVI) were significantly increased (p<0.0001) in study group compared to the control group. SVI in study group was due to concomitant sympathetic activation and vagal inhibition. There was significant correlation and independent contribution of markers of insulin resistance, dyslipidemia, inflammation and OS to LF-HF ratio. Multiple-regression analysis demonstrated an independent contribution of LF-HF ratio to prehypertension status (standardized beta 0.415, p<0.001) and bivariate logistic-regression showed significant prediction (OR 2.40, CI 1.128–5.326, p = 0.002) of LF-HF ratio of HRV to increased RPP, the marker of CV risk, in study group.
SVI in FDR of type 2 diabetics occurs due to sympathetic activation and vagal withdrawal. The SVI contributes to prehypertension status and CV risks caused by insulin resistance, dyslipidemia, inflammation and oxidative stress in FDR of type 2 diabetics.
Cardiovascular morbidities have been reported in hypothyroidism.
The objective of this study is to investigate the link of sympathovagal imbalance (SVI) to cardiovascular risks (CVRs) and the plausible mechanisms of CVR in hypothyroidism.
Materials and Methods:
Age-matched 104 females (50 controls, 54 hypothyroids) were recruited and their body mass index (BMI), cardiovascular parameters, autonomic function tests by spectral analysis of heart rate variability (HRV), heart rate response to standing, deep breathing and blood pressure response to isometric handgrip were studied. Thyroid profile, lipid profile, immunological and inflammatory markers were estimated and their association with low-frequency to the high-frequency ratio (LF-HF) of HRV, the marker of SVI was assessed by multivariate regression.
Increased diastolic pressure, decreased HRV, increased LF-HF, dyslipidemia and increased high-sensitive C-reactive protein (hsCRP) were observed in hypothyroid patients and all these parameters had significant correlation with LF-HF. BMI had no significant association with LF-HF. Atherogenic index (β 1.144, P = 0.001) and hsCRP (b 0.578, P = 0.009) had independent contribution to LF-HF. LF-HF could significantly predict hypertension status (odds ratio 2.05, confidence interval 1.110-5.352, P = 0.008) in hypothyroid subjects.
SVI due to sympathetic activation and vagal withdrawal occurs in hypothyroidism. Dyslipidemia and low-grade inflammation, but not obesity contribute to SVI and SVI contributes to cardiovascular risks.
Autonomic imbalance; Body mass index; Cardiovascular risks; Dyslipidemia; High-sensitive C-reactive protein; Hypothyroidism; Sympathovagal imbalance
Although a clear link between diabetic peripheral neuropathy (DPN) and autonomic neuropathy is recognized, the relationship of autonomic neuropathy with subtypes of DPN is less clear. This study aimed to investigate the relationship of autonomic neuropathy with painless and painful DPN.
RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS
Eighty subjects (20 healthy volunteers, 20 with no DPN, 20 with painful DPN, 20 with painless DPN) underwent detailed neurophysiological investigations (including conventional autonomic function tests [AFTs]) and spectral analysis of short-term heart rate variability (HRV), which assesses sympathovagal modulation of the heart rate. Various frequency-domain (including low frequency [LF], high frequency [HF], and total power [TP]) and time-domain (standard deviation of all normal-to-normal R-R intervals [SDNN] and root mean square of successive differences [RMSSD]) parameters were assessed.
HRV analysis revealed significant differences across the groups in LF, HF, TP, SDNN, and RMSSD (ANOVA P < 0.001). Subgroup analysis showed that compared with painless DPN, painful DPN had significantly lower HF (3.59 ± 1.08 [means ± SD] vs. 2.67 ± 1.56), TP (5.73 ± 1.28 vs. 4.79 ± 1.51), and SDNN (2.91 ± 0.65 vs. 1.62 ± 3.5), P < 0.05. No significant differences were seen between painless DPN and painful DPN using an AFT.
This study shows that painful DPN is associated with significantly greater autonomic dysfunction than painless DPN. These changes are only detected using spectral analysis of HRV (a simple test based on a 5-min electrocardiogram recording), suggesting that it is a more sensitive tool to detect autonomic dysfunction, which is still under-detected in people with diabetes. The greater autonomic dysfunction seen in painful DPN may reflect more predominant small fiber involvement and adds to the growing evidence of its role in the pathophysiology of painful DPN.
To identify autonomic dysfunction among patients with urinary incontinence (UI) with or without detrusor overactivity (DO), we measured and compared heart rate variability (HRV) in these groups.
Materials and Methods
We studied HRV in 12 female UI patients with DO (mean age, 57.3±11.0 years) and 53 female UI patients without DO (mean age, 56.8±9.8 years). HRV parameters were measured by SA-3000P®. Heart rates, the time domain index, and the frequency domain index were compared. To compare time domain indexes, we used the standard deviation of the N-N interval (SDNN), the square root of the mean squared differences of successive N-N intervals (RMSSD), and the frequency domain indexes total power (TP), very low frequency (VLF), low frequency (LF), high frequency (HF), and the low-frequency/high-frequency ratio (LF/HF ratio).
RMSSD values were lower in UI patients with DO than in those without DO, but the values of SDNN and HR showed no significant difference. Whereas the values of LF and HF were lower in UI patients with DO than in those without DO, the LF/HF ratio was higher. TP and VLF were not significantly different.
RMSSD, HF, and LF were lower in DO patients than in controls without DO, but the LF/HF ratio was higher. This suggests that both sympathetic and parasympathetic activity is attenuated in DO, but the autonomic imbalance is higher.
Heart rate; Urinary incontinence
The objectives of this study were to evaluate and compare the use of linear and nonlinear methods for analysis of heart rate variability (HRV) in healthy subjects and in patients after acute myocardial infarction (AMI). Heart rate (HR) was recorded for 15 min in the supine position in 10 patients with AMI taking β-blockers (aged 57 ± 9 years) and in 11 healthy subjects (aged 53 ± 4 years). HRV was analyzed in the time domain (RMSSD and RMSM), the frequency domain using low- and high-frequency bands in normalized units (nu; LFnu and HFnu) and the LF/HF ratio and approximate entropy (ApEn) were determined. There was a correlation (P < 0.05) of RMSSD, RMSM, LFnu, HFnu, and the LF/HF ratio index with the ApEn of the AMI group on the 2nd (r = 0.87, 0.65, 0.72, 0.72, and 0.64) and 7th day (r = 0.88, 0.70, 0.69, 0.69, and 0.87) and of the healthy group (r = 0.63, 0.71, 0.63, 0.63, and 0.74), respectively. The median HRV indexes of the AMI group on the 2nd and 7th day differed from the healthy group (P < 0.05): RMSSD = 10.37, 19.95, 24.81; RMSM = 23.47, 31.96, 43.79; LFnu = 0.79, 0.79, 0.62; HFnu = 0.20, 0.20, 0.37; LF/HF ratio = 3.87, 3.94, 1.65; ApEn = 1.01, 1.24, 1.31, respectively. There was agreement between the methods, suggesting that these have the same power to evaluate autonomic modulation of HR in both AMI patients and healthy subjects. AMI contributed to a reduction in cardiac signal irregularity, higher sympathetic modulation and lower vagal modulation.
Myocardial infarction; Heart rate variability; Autonomic nervous system; Spectral analysis; Nonlinear dynamics
While frank obesity is associated with reduced HRV, indicative of poorer autonomic nervous system (ANS) function, the association between body mass index (BMI) and HRV is less clear. We hypothesized that effects of adiposity on ANS are mostly mediated by visceral fat and less by subcutaneous fat; therefore, centrally distributed adipose tissue, that is, waist circumference (WC), should be more strongly associated with HRV than overall adiposity (BMI). To examine this hypothesis, we used data collected in a subset of the Baltimore Longitudinal Study of Aging to compare strength of association between HRV and WC to that of HRV and BMI. Time domain HRV variables SDNN (standard deviation of successive differences in normal-to-normal (N-N) intervals) and RMSSD (root mean square of successive differences in N-N intervals) were calculated from 24-hour Holter recordings in 159 participants (29–96 years). Increasing WC was associated with decreasing SDNN and RMSSD in younger but not older participants (P value for WC-by-age interaction = 0.003). BMI was not associated with either SDNN or RMSSD at any age. In conclusion, central adiposity may contribute to sympathetic and parasympathetic ANS declines early in life.
The aim of the study was to analyse parameters reflecting the sympathovagal control of ventricular depolarisation and repolarisation [heart rate variability (HRV) and QT interval dispersion (QTd)] in patients undergoing elective percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty (PTCA), and determine whether HRV correlates with QT dispersion parameters.
The study consisted of 26 consecutive patients (16 men, 10 women) with single-vessel coronary artery disease (CAD) who underwent elective coronary angioplasty. HRV analyses of all subjects were obtained with the time- and frequency-domain methods. For frequency-domain analysis, low-frequency HRV (LF), high-frequency HRV (HF) and the LF:HF ratio were measured. For time-domain analysis, standard deviations of the normal-to-normal QRS intervals (SDNN) and square roots of the mean squared differences of successive N–N intervals (rMSSD) were obtained. QT intervals were also corrected for heart rate using the Bazett’s formula, and the corrected QT interval dispersion (QTcd) was then calculated. All measurements (HRV parameters and QTcd) were made before and immediately after PTCA.
QTcd was significantly decreased after PTCA (52.2 ± 3.5 vs 42 ± 3.9 ms). SDNN (94.1 ± 22 vs 123.9 ± 35.2 ms), rMSSD (43.7 ± 20.1 vs 73.4 ± 14.5 ms) and HF (51.1 ± 48.8 vs 64.2 ± 28.6 ms2) were significantly higher after PTCA, whereas LF (142 ± 41.5 vs 157.2 ± 25.9 ms2) and the ratio of LF:HF (3.3 ± 1.9 vs 2.1 ± 1.2) were significantly decreased after PTCA. We observed a significant negative correlation after PTCA between QTcd and LF (r = −0.87, p = 0.01) and between QTcd and the ratio of LF:HF (r = −056, p < 0.05).
Among the patients with CAD undergoing PTCA, QTcd significantly decreased after PTCA, and negatively correlated with LF, the parameter reflecting the sympathetic system.
This study aimed to evaluate the effect of transcutaneous electric acupoint stimulations (TEAS) on body composition and heart rate variability (HRV) in postmenopausal women with obesity. In this prospective study, 49 postmenopausal women were recruited in Taiwan. Body composition was used as a screening test for obesity (percentage body fat > 30%, waist circumference > 80 cm). The experimental group (n = 24) received TEAS treatment 30 min twice per week for 12 weeks at the Zusanli (ST 36) and Sanyinjiao (SP 6) acupoints. The control group (n = 25) did not receive any intervention. The study of HRV was analyzed by time (standard deviation of the normal-to-normal (NN) intervals (SDNN) and square root of the mean squared differences of successive NN intervals (RMSSD) indices) and frequency domain methods. Power spectral components were obtained at low (LF) and high (HF) frequencies. Body composition and HRV values were measured at the 4th, 8th, and 12th weeks. A total of 40 subjects completed this study. Waist circumference and percentage body fat in the experimental group (n = 20) were significantly less than those of the control group (n = 20) at the 8th and 12th weeks (all P < .05). Additionally, at the same time points, percentage lean body mass in the experimental group was significantly greater than that in the control group (P < .05). SDNN values increased significantly at the 4th and 8th weeks when compared with the control group (all P < .05). At 12 weeks, SDNN value was not significantly different from that of the control group (P = .105). TEAS treatment improves body composition, and has a transient effect on the HRV in postmenopausal women with obesity.
The purpose of this study was to assess the effect of three different body positions on HRV measures following short-term submaximal exercise. Thirty young healthy males performed submaximal cycling for five minutes on three different occasions. Measures of HRV were obtained from 5-min R to R wave intervals before the exercise (baseline) and during the last five minutes of a 15 min recovery (post-exercise) in three different body positions (seated, supine, supine with elevated legs). Measures of the mean RR normal-to-normal intervals (RRNN), the standard deviation of normal-to-normal intervals (SDNN), the root mean square of successive differences (RMSSD) and the low-frequency (LF) and the high-frequency (HF) spectral power were analyzed. Post-exercise RRNN, RMSSD were significantly higher in the two supine positions (p < 0. 01) compared with seated body position. Post-exercise ln LF was significantly lower in the supine position with elevated legs than in the seated body position (p < 0.05). No significant difference was found among the three different body positions for post-exercise ln HF (p > 0.05). Post-exercise time domain measures of HRV (RRNN, SDNN, RMSSD) were significantly lower compared with baseline values (p < 0.01) regardless body position. Post-exercise ln LF and ln HF in all three positions remained significantly reduced during recovery compared to baseline values (p < 0.01). The present study suggests that 15 minutes following short-term submaximal exercise most of the time and frequency domain HRV measures have not returned to pre-exercise values. Modifications in autonomic cardiac regulation induced by body posture present at rest remained after exercise, but the post-exercise differences among the three positions did not resemble the ones established at rest.
Whether different body positions may enhance post-exercise recovery of autonomic regulation remains unclear.
The absence of restoration of HRV measures after 15 minutes of recovery favor the existence of modifying effects of exercise on mechanisms underlying heart regulation.
On the basis of discrepancies in HRV measures in different body positions pre- and post-exercise we argue that the pace of recovery of cardiac autonomic regulation is dependent on body posture.
Heart rate variability; recovery; exercise
Although studies have documented the association between heart rate variability (HRV) and ambient particulate exposures, the association between HRV, especially at night, and metal-rich, occupational particulate exposures remains unclear.
Our goal in this study was to investigate the association between long-duration HRV, including nighttime HRV, and occupational PM2.5 exposures.
We used 24-hr ambulatory electrocardiograms (ECGs) to monitor 36 male boilermaker welders (mean age of 41 years) over a workday and nonworkday. ECGs were analyzed for HRV in the time domain; rMSSD (square root of the mean squared differences of successive intervals), SDNN (SD of normal-to-normal intervals over entire recording), and SDNNi (SDNN for all 5-min segments) were summarized over 24-hr, day (0730–2130 hours), and night (0000–0700 hours) periods. PM2.5 (particulate matter with an aerodynamic diameter ≤ 2.5 μm) exposures were monitored over the workday, and 8-hr time-weighted average concentrations were calculated. We used linear regression to assess the associations between HRV and workday particulate exposures. Matched measurements from a nonworkday were used to control for individual cardiac risk factors.
Mean (± SD) PM2.5 exposure was 0.73 ± 0.50 mg/m3 and ranged from 0.04 to 2.70 mg/m3. We observed a consistent inverse exposure–response relationship, with a decrease in all HRV measures with increased PM2.5 exposure. However, the decrease was most pronounced at night, where a 1-mg/m3 increase in PM2.5 was associated with a change of −8.32 [95% confidence interval (CI), −16.29 to −0.35] msec nighttime rMSSD, −14.77 (95% CI, −31.52 to 1.97) msec nighttime SDNN, and −8.37 (95% CI, −17.93 to 1.20) msec nighttime SDNNi, after adjusting for nonworking nighttime HRV, age, and smoking.
Metal-rich particulate exposures were associated with decreased long-duration HRV, especially at night. Further research is needed to elucidate which particulate metal constituent is responsible for decreased HRV.
environmental cardiology; heart rate variability; occupational; particulate exposures; welders
To examine the circadian pattern of cardiac autonomic modulation (CAM) and its attributes in general population.
We obtained 24-h beat-to-beat RR data using a high resolution 12-lead Holter ECG in a community-dwelling sample of 115 non-smokers. We performed heart rate variability (HRV) analysis on the normal RRs from each 5-min segment to obtain time-specific HRV indices: high (HF; 0.15–0.40 Hz) and low (LF; 0.04–0.15 Hz) frequency powers, standard deviation of RR intervals (SDNN), and the square root of the mean of the sum of the squared differences of the adjacent RR intervals (RMSSD). For each individual, we fit the segment-specific HRV data to a cosine periodic function, and estimated 3 individual-level cosine function parameters to quantify the circadian variation: the mean (M), amplitude (A), and acrophase (θ). We then used a random-effects meta-analysis to summarize the M, A, and θ, and their 95% confidence intervals (CI).
The mean age was 56 (SD 8) years, with 63% female and 76% white. The averages of M, A and θ (95%CI) of log HF were 3.59 (3.43–3.76) ms2, 0.61 (0.54–0.68) ms2, and 3:10 (2:25–3:55) AM, respectively, and that of RMSSD were 22.3 (20.5–24.1) ms, 6.5 (5.4–7.5) ms, 3:45 (2:55–4:35) AM, respectively. Older age is associated with lower mean of HRV. Males have higher oscillation amplitude than females. The acrophase of LF/HF was earlier in females than in males, and in younger individuals than in older individuals.
The circadian pattern of CAM can be quantified by 3 cosine parameters of HRV, which are correlated with age and gender.
Autonomic modulation; Heart rate variability; Periodic rhythm; Community population
Although obesity has been associated with imbalances in cardiac autonomic nervous system, it is unclear whether there are differential relationships between adiposity measures and heart rate variability (HRV) measures. We aimed to examine differences in the relationship between adiposity measures and HRV indices in a healthy Korean population.
Materials and Methods
In all, 1409 non-smokers (811 males, 598 females) without known histories of cardiovascular (CV), endocrine, or neurological diseases underwent adiposity measurements [(body mass index (BMI), percentage of body fat mass (PBF), and waist-to-hip ratio (WHR)], the HRV assessment (SDNN, RMSSD, LF, HF, LF/HF, and pNN50), and examination for CV risk factors (fasting glucose, LDL-cholesterol, HDL-cholesterol, triglycerides, hs-CRP, and blood pressure).
Compared with BMI and PBF, WHR was more strongly correlated with each HRV index and more likely to predict decreased HRV (<15 percentile vs. ≥15 percentile of each HRV index) in ROC curves analysis. In linear regression analysis, all adiposity measures were inversely associated with each HRV measure before adjusting for age, gender, and CV risk factors (p<0.05). After adjusting for the covariates, WHR was inversely related to RMSSD, LF, and pNN50; PBF with RMSSD, HF, and pNN50; BMI with RMSSD (p<0.05). The inversed association between HRV indices and the gender-specific WHR tertile was significant for subjects with BMI ≥25 kg/m2, but not for those with BMI <25 kg/m2.
WHR and PBF appear to be better indicators for low HRV than BMI, and the association between abdominal adiposity and HRV may be stronger in overweight subjects.
Heart rate variability; adiposity; abdominal fat; cardiac autonomic function; obesity
Background & objectives:
Cardiovascular complications may lead to mortality in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA). We assessed heart rate variability (HRV), an important autonomic function, to quantify the risk for cardiovascular complications in Indian patients with RA.
The study was carried out in RA patients (n=45) diagnosed as per American College of Rheumatology criteria and healthy controls. HRV recording and analysis was done using Nevrokard software using time and frequency domain analyses. The overall autonomic tone, parasympathetic drive, sympathetic drive and sympatho-vagal ratio were quantified by using various parameters. It included standard deviation of all R-R intervals (SDNN), standard deviation of successive differences between adjoining normal cycles (SDSD), root-mean square of successive differences (RMSSD), and number of R-R intervals differing by >50 ms from adjacent intervals (NN50) in the time domain analysis. In frequency domain analysis, low frequency (LF) and high frequency (HF), LF/HF and total power were assessed.
Demographic profile was comparable between groups; however, systolic BP was higher in patients with RA. SDNN, SDSD, RMSSD, NN50, LF and HF power and total power (ms × ms) were significantly lower in patients with RA versus healthy controls (P<0.001). Disease activity score at 28 joints indicating severity of the disease was significantly and positively correlated with SDSD (r=0.375, R2=14.06; P=0.045) while LF and HF power (ms × ms) were significantly and inversely correlated with rheumatoid factor (r=-0.438 and -0.445; R2=19.1 and 19.8; P=0.017 and 0.016, respectively).
Interpretation & conclusions:
HRV was significantly altered in patients with RA and independently associated with disease activity. Hence autonomic function testing, using HRV, may be useful as part of cardiovascular risk assessment in these patients.
Cardiovascular status; rheumatoid arthritis; short term heart rate variability
This study examined the association of estrogen receptor alpha gene (ESR1) polymorphisms with cardiorespiratory and metabolic parameters in young women. In total, 354 healthy women were selected for cardiopulmonary exercise testing and short-term heart rate (HR) variability (HRV) evaluation. The HRV analysis was determined by the temporal indices rMSSD (square root of the mean squared differences of successive R–R intervals (RRi) divided by the number of RRi minus one), SDNN (root mean square of differences from mean RRi, divided by the number of RRi) and power spectrum components by low frequency (LF), high frequency (HF) and LF/HF ratio. Blood samples were obtained for serum lipids, estradiol and DNA extraction. ESR1 rs2234693 and rs9340799 polymorphisms were analyzed by PCR and fragment restriction analysis. HR and oxygen uptake (VO2) values did not differ between the ESR1 polymorphisms with respect to autonomic modulation. We not find a relationship between ESR1 T–A, T–G, C–A and C–G haplotypes and cardiorespiratory and metabolic variables. Multiple linear regression analysis demonstrated that VO2, total cholesterol and triglycerides influence HRV (p < 0.05). The results suggest that ESR1 variants have no effect on cardiorespiratory and metabolic variables, while HRV indices are influenced by aerobic capacity and lipids in healthy women.
estrogen receptor-α gene polymorphisms; heart rate variability; aerobic capacity; lipids
We investigated the relationships between the autonomic nervous system, as assessed by heart rate variability (HRV) and levels of N-terminal Pro-B-type Natriuretic Peptide (Nt-proBNP) in patients with acute myocardial infarction (MI).
Methods and Results
The mean of standard deviation of RR intervals (SDNN), the percentage of RR intervals with >50 ms variation (pNN50), square root of mean squared differences of successive RR intervals (rMSSD), and frequency domain parameters (total power (TP), high frequency and low frequency power ratio (LF/HF)) were assessed by 24 h Holter ECG monitoring. 1018 consecutive patients admitted <24 h for an acute MI were included. Plasma Nt-proBNP (Elecsys, Roche) was measured from blood samples taken on admission. The median (IQR) Nt-proBNP level was 681(159–2432) pmol/L. Patients with the highest quartile of Nt-proBNP were older, with higher rate of risk factors and lower ejection fraction. The highest Nt-proBNP quartile group had the lowest SDNN, LF/HF and total power but similar pNN50 and rMSSD levels. Nt-proBNP levels correlated negatively with SDNN (r = −0.19, p<0.001), LF/HF (r = −0.37, p<0.001), and LF (r = −0.29, p<0.001) but not HF (r = −0.043, p = 0.172). Multiple regression analysis showed that plasma propeptide levels remained predictive of LF/HF (B(SE) = −0.065(0.015), p<0.001)), even after adjustment for confounders.
In conclusion, our population-based study highlights the importance of Nt-proBNP levels to predict decreased HRV after acute MI.
Reduced heart rate variability (HRV) in older patients with heart failure (HF) is common and indicates poor prognosis. Exercise training (ET) has been shown to improve HRV in younger patients with HF. However the effect of ET on HRV in older patients with HF is not known.
Methods and Results
Sixty-six participants (36% males), age 69±5 years, with HF and both preserved ejection fraction (HFPEF) and reduced ejection fraction (HFREF), were randomly assigned to 16 weeks of supervised ET (ET group) versus attention-control (AC group). Two HRV parameters (the standard deviation of all normal RR intervals (SDNN) and the root mean square of successive differences in normal RR intervals (RMSSD)) were measured at baseline and after completion of the study. When compared with the AC group, the ET group had a significantly greater increase in both SDNN (15.46 ± 5.02 ms in ET versus 2.37 ± 2.13 ms in AC, P = 0.016), and RMSSD (17.53 ± 7.83 ms in ET versus 1.69 ± 2.63 ms in AC, P = 0.003). This increase was seen in both genders and HF categories.
ET improves HRV in older patients with both HFREF and HFPEF.
The aim of this study was to investigate the relationship between heart rate variability (HRV), the Framingham risk score (FRS), and the 10-year risk of coronary heart disease (CHD) development among Korean adults.
The subjects were 85 healthy Korean adults recruited from a health check-up center. The FRS and 10-year risk of CHD development were calculated.
The FRS in men was inversely correlated with the standard deviation of all normal to normal RR-intervals (SDNN); the root mean square successive difference (RMSSD); the percentage of successive normal cardiac inter-beat intervals greater than 20 ms, 30 ms, and 50 ms (pNN20, pNN30, pNN50); the low frequency (LF); and the high frequency (HF) (P < 0.05). There was no significant relationship between the FRS and HRV in women. Overall, in the receiver operating characteristic (ROC) analysis, the RMSSD, HF, SDNN, LF, LF/HF ratio, and pNN30 predicted an increased 10-year CHD risk. After adjusting for sex and body mass index, those with greater than one standard deviation in the RMSSD, HF, and LF had a 52-59% reduction in their 10-year risk of CHD development ≥ 10%.
This study therefore indicates that the HRV indices, particularly SDNN, RMSSD, pNN30, LF, and HF may be useful parameters for the assessment of CHD risk. Most notably, the usefulness of these HRV measures as indicators for CHD risk evaluation may be greater among men than among women.
Heart Rate; Risk Assessment; Electrocardiography
It is still unknown whether the associations between particulate matter (PM) and heart rate variability (HRV) differ by particle sizes with aerodynamic diameters between 0.3 μm and 1.0 μm (PM0.3–1.0), between 1.0 μm and 2.5 μm (PM1.0–2.5), and between 2.5 μm and 10 μm (PM2.5–10). We measured electrocardiographics and PM exposures in 10 patients with coronary heart disease and 16 patients with either prehypertension or hypertension. The outcome variables were standard deviation of all normal-to-normal (NN) intervals (SDNN), the square root of the mean of the sum of the squares of differences between adjacent NN intervals (r-MSSD), low frequency (LF; 0.04–0.15 Hz), high frequency (HF; 0.15–0.40 Hz), and LF:HF ratio for HRV. The pollution variables were mass concentrations of PM0.3–1.0, PM1.0–2.5, and PM2.5–10. We used linear mixed-effects models to examine the association between PM exposures and log10-transformed HRV indices, adjusting for key personal and environmental attributes. We found that PM0.3–1.0 exposures at 1- to 4-hr moving averages were associated with SDNN and r-MSSD in both cardiac and hypertensive patients. For an interquartile increase in PM0.3–1.0, there were 1.49–4.88% decreases in SDNN and 2.73–8.25% decreases in r-MSSD. PM0.3–1.0 exposures were also associated with decreases in LF and HF for hypertensive patients at 1- to 3-hr moving averages except for cardiac patients at moving averages of 2 or 3 hr. By contrast, we found that HRV was not associated with either PM1.0–2.5 or PM2.5–10. HRV reduction in susceptible population was associated with PM0.3–1.0 but was not associated with either PM1.0–2.5 or PM2.5–10.
air pollution; autonomic system; epidemiology; heart rate variability; particulate matter
Decreased heart rate variability (HRV) is related to higher morbidity and mortality. In this study we evaluated the linear and nonlinear indices of the HRV in stable angina patients submitted to coronary angiography.
We studied 77 unselected patients for elective coronary angiography, which were divided into two groups: coronary artery disease (CAD) and non-CAD groups. For analysis of HRV indices, HRV was recorded beat by beat with the volunteers in the supine position for 40 minutes. We analyzed the linear indices in the time (SDNN [standard deviation of normal to normal], NN50 [total number of adjacent RR intervals with a difference of duration greater than 50ms] and RMSSD [root-mean square of differences]) and frequency domains ultra-low frequency (ULF) ≤ 0,003 Hz, very low frequency (VLF) 0,003 – 0,04 Hz, low frequency (LF) (0.04–0.15 Hz), and high frequency (HF) (0.15–0.40 Hz) as well as the ratio between LF and HF components (LF/HF). In relation to the nonlinear indices we evaluated SD1, SD2, SD1/SD2, approximate entropy (−ApEn), α1, α2, Lyapunov Exponent, Hurst Exponent, autocorrelation and dimension correlation. The definition of the cutoff point of the variables for predictive tests was obtained by the Receiver Operating Characteristic curve (ROC). The area under the ROC curve was calculated by the extended trapezoidal rule, assuming as relevant areas under the curve ≥ 0.650.
Coronary arterial disease patients presented reduced values of SDNN, RMSSD, NN50, HF, SD1, SD2 and -ApEn. HF ≤ 66 ms2, RMSSD ≤ 23.9 ms, ApEn ≤−0.296 and NN50 ≤ 16 presented the best discriminatory power for the presence of significant coronary obstruction.
We suggest the use of Heart Rate Variability Analysis in linear and nonlinear domains, for prognostic purposes in patients with stable angina pectoris, in view of their overall impairment.
Heart rate variability; Nonlinear dynamics; Coronary artery disease; Cardiovascular physiology; Stable angina
We tested the hypothesis that body fat percentage determines cardiac sympathovagal balance in healthy subjects.
Heart rate variability (HRV) measurements were made of the standard deviation of the normal– normal RR intervals (SDNN) and the low frequency/high frequency (LF/HF) ratio, from time domain and fast Fourier transform spectral analysis of electrocardiogram RR intervals during trials of uncontrolled and controlled (paced) breathing at 0.2 Hz. Body fat percentage was measured by dual energy x-ray absorptiometric (DEXA) scanning. Significance of differences between uncontrolled and controlled (paced) breathing was determined by analysis of variance and correlations between body fat percentage and HRV measurements by Pearson's coefficient at P<0.05.
Percent body fat was negatively correlated with LF/HF during the uncontrolled breathing (r= −0.56, two-tailed P<0.05, one-tailed P<0.01) but not during the paced breathing trial (r=−0.34, (P>0.1).
We conclude that sympathetic activity produced by paced breathing at 0.2 Hz can obscure the relationship between body fat percentage and sympathovagal balance and that high body fat percentage may be associated with low sympathetic modulation of the heart rate in healthy adolescent/young adult males.
Autonomic nervous system; Cardiovascular physiology; Heart rate variability; African-Americans; Males
Noninvasive positive pressure has been used to treat several diseases. However, the physiological response of the cardiac autonomic system during bilevel positive airway pressure (Bilevel) remains unclear.
The aim of this study was to evaluate the heart rate variability (HRV) during Bilevel in young healthy subjects.
Twenty men underwent 10-minute R-R interval recordings during sham ventilation (SV), Bilevel of 8–15 cmH2O and Bilevel of 13–20 cmH2O. The HRV was analyzed by means of the parallel R-R interval (mean R-Ri), the standard deviation of all R-Ri (SDNN), the root mean square of the squares of the differences between successive R-Ri (rMSSD), the number of successive R-Ri pairs that differ by more than 50 milliseconds (NN50), the percentage of successive R-Ri that differ by more than 50 milliseconds (pNN50), the low frequency (LF), the high frequency (HF) and SD1 and SD2. Additionally, physiological variables, including blood pressure, breathing frequency and end tidal CO2, were collected. Repeated-measures ANOVA and Pearson correlation were used to assess the differences between the three studied conditions and the relationships between the delta of Bilevel at 13–20 cmH2O and sham ventilation of the HRV indexes and the physiological variables, respectively.
The R-Ri mean, rMSSD, NN50, pNN50 and SD1 were reduced during Bilevel of 13–20 cmH2O as compared to SV. An R-Ri mean reduction was also observed in Bilevel of 13–20 cmH2O compared to 8–15 cmH2O. Both the R-Ri mean and HF were reduced during Bilevel of 8–15 cmH2O as compared to SV, while the LF increased during application of Bilevel of 8–15 cmH2O as compared to SV. The delta (between Bilevel at 13–20 cmH2O and sham ventilation) of ETCO2 correlated positively with LF, HF, the LF/HF ratio, SDNN, rMSSD and SD1. Acute application of Bilevel was able to alter the cardiac autonomic nervous system, resulting in a reduction in parasympathetic activity and an increase in sympathetic activity and higher level of positive pressure can cause a greater influence on the cardiovascular and respiratory system.
Heart rate; Neural control; Heart rate variability; Noninvasive positive pressure ventilation; Physiological responses
Few longitudinal studies have examined ethnic and sex differences, predictors and tracking stabilities of heart rate variability (HRV) at rest and in response to stress in youths and young adults.
Two evaluations were performed approximately 1.5 years apart on 399 youths and young adults (189 European Americans [EAs] and 210 African Americans [AAs]; 190 males and 209 females). HRV was measured at rest and during a video game challenge.
AAs showed significantly higher resting root mean square of successive differences (RMSSD) of normal R-R intervals and high-frequency (HF) power than EAs (Ps< 0.01). Females displayed larger decrease of RMSSD and HF during video game challenge than males (Ps< 0.05). These ethnic and sex differences were consistent across 1.5 years. No significant sex difference of resting HRV or ethnic difference of HRV response to stress was observed. In addition to age, ethnicity or sex, baseline resting HRV or HRV response to stress are predictors of the corresponding variables 1.5 years later (Ps< 0.01). Furthermore, weight gain indexed by either body mass index or waist circumference predicts declined resting HRV levels during follow up (Ps < 0.05). Tracking stabilities were high (>0.5) for resting HRV, but relatively low (<0.3) for HRV in response to stress.
AAs show higher resting HRV than EAs, and females display greater HRV response to stress than males; and these ethnic and sex differences are consistent across 1.5 years. Resting HRV declines with weight gain.
heart rate variability; longitudinal study; sex; ethnicity
To assess the distribution of autonomic nervous system (ANS) dysfunction in overweight and obese children.
Parasympathetic and sympathetic ANS function was assessed in children and adolescents with no evidence of impaired glucose metabolism by analysis of heart rate variability (low frequency power ln(LF), high frequency power, ln(HF); ln(LF/HF) ratio, ratio of longest RR interval during expiration to shortest interval during inspiration (E/I ratio), root mean square of successive differences (RMSSD); sympathetic skin response (SSR); and quantitative pupillography (pupil diameter in darkness, light reflex amplitude, latency, constriction velocity, re-dilation velocity). The relationship of each ANS variable to the standard deviation score of body mass index (BMI-SDS) was assessed in a linear model considering age, gender and pubertal stage as co-variates and employing an F-statistic to compare the fit of nested models. Group comparisons between normal weight and obese children as well as an analysis of dependence on insulin resistance (as indexed by the Homeostasis Model Assessment of Insulin Resistance, HOMA-IR) were performed for parameters shown to correlate with BMI-SDS. Statistical significance was set at 5%.
Measurements were performed in 149 individuals (mean age 12.0 y; 90 obese 45 boys; 59 normal weight, 34 boys). E/I ratio (p = 0.003), ln(HF) (p = 0.03), pupil diameter in darkness (p = 0.01) were negatively correlated with BMI-SDS, whereas ln(LF/HF) was positively correlated (p = 0.05). Early re-dilation velocity was in trend negatively correlated to BMI-SDS (p = 0.08). None of the parameters that depended significantly on BMI-SDS was found to be significantly correlated with HOMA-IR.
These findings demonstrate extended ANS dysfunction in obese children and adolescents, affecting several organ systems. Both parasympathetic activity and sympathetic activity are reduced. The conspicuous pattern of ANS dysfunction raises the possibility that obesity may give rise to dysfunction of the peripheral autonomic nerves resembling that observed in normal-weight diabetic children and adolescents.