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author:("Pal, pragati")
1.  Association of hypertension status and cardiovascular risks with sympathovagal imbalance in first degree relatives of type 2 diabetics 
As reports show cardiovascular (CV) risks in first‐degree relatives (FDR) of type 2 diabetics, and autonomic imbalance predisposing to CV risks, in the present study we have assessed the contribution of sympathovagal imbalance (SVI) to CV risks in these subjects.
Materials and Methods
Body mass index (BMI), waist‐to‐hip ratio (WHR), basal heart rate (BHR), blood pressure (BP), rate pressure product (RPP), and spectral indices of heart rate variability (HRV) were reordered and analyzed in FDR of type 2 diabetics (study group, n = 293) and in subjects with no family history of diabetes (control group, n = 405).
The ratio of low‐frequency (LF) to high‐frequency (HF) power of HRV (LF–HF), a sensitive marker of SVI, was significantly increased (P < 0.001) in the study group compared with the control group. The SVI in the study group was due to concomitant sympathetic activation (increased LF) and vagal inhibition (decreased HF). In the study group, the LF–HF ratio was significantly correlated with BMI, WHR, BHR, BP and RPP. Multiple regression analysis showed an independent contribution of LF–HF to hypertension status (P = 0.000), and bivariate logistic regression showed significant prediction (odds ratio 2.16, confidence interval 1.130–5.115) of LF–HF to increased RPP, the marker of CV risk, in the study group.
Sympathovagal imbalance in the form of increased sympathetic and decreased parasympathetic activity is present in FDR of type 2 diabetics. Increased resting heart rate, elevated hypertension status, decreased HRV and increased RPP in these subjects make them vulnerable to CV risks. SVI in these subjects contributes to CV risks independent of the degree of adiposity.
PMCID: PMC4210069  PMID: 25411606
Autonomic imbalance; Cardiovascular risk; First‐degree relatives of type 2 diabetics
2.  A Randomized Controlled Trial to Study the Effect of Yoga Therapy on Cardiac Function and N Terminal Pro BNP in Heart Failure 
The purpose of this study was to evaluate whether yoga training in addition to standard medical therapy can improve cardiac function and reduce N terminal pro B-type natriuretic peptide (NT pro BNP) in heart failure (HF).
130 patients were recruited and randomized into two groups: Control Group (CG) (n = 65), Yoga Group (YG). In YG, 44 patients and in CG, 48 patients completed the study. Cardiac function using left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF), myocardial performance index (Tei index), and NT pro BNP, a biomarker of HF, was assessed at baseline and after 12 weeks.
Improvement in LVEF, Tei index, and NT pro BNP were statistically significant in both the groups. Furthermore, when the changes in before and after 12 weeks were in percentage, LVEF increased 36.88% in the YG and 16.9% in the CG, Tei index was reduced 27.87% in the YG and 2.79% in the CG, NT pro BNP was reduced 63.75% in the YG and 10.77% in the CG. The between group comparisons from pre to post 12 weeks were significant for YG improvements (LVEF, P < 0.01, Tei index, P < 0.01, NT pro BNP, P < 0.01).
These results indicate that the addition of yoga therapy to standard medical therapy for HF patients has a markedly better effect on cardiac function and reduced myocardial stress measured using NT pro BNP in patients with stable HF.
PMCID: PMC3981569  PMID: 24737932
yoga therapy; heart failure; ejection fraction; Tei index; NT pro BNP
3.  Effect of Yoga Therapy on Heart Rate, Blood Pressure and Cardiac Autonomic Function in Heart Failure 
Background and Objective: It is well known that a hall mark of heart failure is adverse changes in autonomic function. Elevated blood pressure is a powerful predictor of congestive heart failure and other Cardiovascular Disease (CVD) outcomes. In this study, we planned to examine the effects of a 12 week yoga therapy on blood pressure, heart rate, heart rate variability, and rate pressure product (RPP).
Methods: Out of 130 heart failure patients recruited for the study, 65 patients were randomly selected to receive 12 week yoga therapy along with standard medical therapy (yoga group). Other patients (n=65) received only standard medical therapy (control group). Heart rate, blood pressure, cardiac autonomic function (by short-term heart-rate variability analysis) and myocardial oxygen consumption (by RPP) were assessed before and after 12 weeks. In the yoga group, 44 patients and in the control group, 48 patients completed the study.
Results: There was a significant decrease in heart rate, blood pressure and RPP in yoga group compared to control group. Also, LFnu and LF-HF ratio decreased significantly and HFnu increased significantly in yoga group compared to control group.
Conclusion: Twelve-week yoga therapy significantly improved the parasympathetic activity and decreased the sympathetic activity in heart failure patients (NYHA I&II)
PMCID: PMC3939525  PMID: 24596712
Yoga; Cardiac failure; Heart rate variability
4.  Slow Yogic Breathing Through Right and Left Nostril Influences Sympathovagal Balance, Heart Rate Variability, and Cardiovascular Risks in Young Adults 
Specific nostril breathing is known to influence autonomic functions.
The study was to assess the effects of right nostril breathing (RNB) and left nostril breathing (LNB) on heart rate variability (HRV) and cardiovascular functions.
Material and Methods:
Eighty-five student volunteers were divided into three groups: RNB group (n = 30), LNB group (n = 30), and control group (n = 25). RNB and LNB group subjects practiced right and left nostril breathing, respectively, every day 1 h for 6 weeks. The control group did not practice nostril breathing. Cardiovascular parameters and spectral indices of HRV were recorded before and after 6-week practice of nostril breathing. In RNB and LNB groups, prediction of rate-pressure product (RPP) by low-frequency to high-frequency ratio (LF-HF) of HRV was assessed by bivariate logistic regression.
HRV indices representing sympathetic activity were increased in the RNB group and indices representing parasympathetic activity were increased in LNB group following 6-week nostril breathing. Prediction of LF-HF to RPP, the marker of cardiovascular risks, was more significant (OR 2.65, P = 0.005) in the LNB group compared to the RNB group (OR 1.452, P = 0.016).
Short-term practice of LNB improves vagal tone, increases HRV, and promotes cardiovascular health of medical students. Practice of RNB increases sympathetic tone and could jeopardize cardiovascular health.
PMCID: PMC3978938  PMID: 24741554
Autonomic functions; Cardiovascular risk; Heart rate variability; Nostril breathing; Sympathovagal balance
5.  Sympathovagal Imbalance Contributes to Prehypertension Status and Cardiovascular Risks Attributed by Insulin Resistance, Inflammation, Dyslipidemia and Oxidative Stress in First Degree Relatives of Type 2 Diabetics 
PLoS ONE  2013;8(11):e78072.
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.
PMCID: PMC3827034  PMID: 24265679
6.  Association of Sympathovagal Imbalance with Cardiovascular Risks in Overt Hypothyroidism 
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.
PMCID: PMC3818829  PMID: 24251274
Autonomic imbalance; Body mass index; Cardiovascular risks; Dyslipidemia; High-sensitive C-reactive protein; Hypothyroidism; Sympathovagal imbalance
7.  Association between Cardiac Autonomic Function, Oxidative Stress and Inflammatory Response in Impaired Fasting Glucose Subjects: Cross-Sectional Study 
PLoS ONE  2012;7(7):e41889.
The worldwide burden of diabetes in 2030 is projected around 552 million. Diabetes leads to higher risk for cardiovascular diseases (CVD). Altered cardiac autonomic function (CAF) measured by heart rate variability (HRV) is observed in early stages of diabetes but the relationship between impaired fasting glucose (IFG) and HRV is still debatable. The aim of the study was to evaluate the association between CAF, oxidative stress, insulin resistance (IR), and inflammatory response in IFG subjects.
Subjects and Methods
Cross-sectional blinded study. Volunteers recruited from health awareness camps underwent CAF and biochemical tests. Based on fasting plasma glucose (FPG) participants (n = 123) were divided into two groups, normal fasting glucose (n = 76) and IFG (n = 47). The comparison of parameters between the groups was carried out using student t test and Mann-Whitney U test for parametric and non-parametric data respectively. The correlation between the parameters was analyzed by Spearman’s rank correlation using SPSS 13.0.
The resting cardiovagal modulation parameters, heart rate response to forced timed breathing, and orthostatic stress were reduced in IFG subjects. Fasting plasma lipid profile, coronary atherogenic lipid risk factors, IR, thiobarbituric acid reactive substance (TBARS), high sensitive C-reactive protein, and tumor necrosis factor alpha were increased and total antioxidant capacity (TAC) was decreased significantly in IFG group but no significant alteration was observed in high-density lipoprotein (HDL-c). Cardiovagal modulation parameters were negatively correlated with triglycerides, FPG, insulin, IR, TBARS, and inflammatory markers and positively with TAC.
There is a continuous interplay between the altered CAF, hyperinsulinemia, IR, oxidative stress parameters, inflammatory response, and IFG in which one factor perpetuates another leading to the progression of disease.
PMCID: PMC3409206  PMID: 22860025
8.  Body mass index contributes to sympathovagal imbalance in prehypertensives 
The present study was conducted to assess the nature of sympathovagal imbalance (SVI) in prehypertensives by short-term analysis of heart rate variability (HRV) to understand the alteration in autonomic modulation and the contribution of BMI to SVI in the genesis of prehypertension.
Body mass index (BMI), basal heart rate (BHR), blood pressure (BP), rate pressure product (RPP) and HRV indices such as total power (TP), low-frequency power (LF), normalized LF (LFnu), high-frequency power (HF), normalized HF (HFnu), LF-HF ratio, mean heart rate (mean RR), square root of the mean squared differences of successive normal to normal intervals (RMSSD), standard deviation of normal to normal RR interval (SDNN), the number of interval differences of successive NN intervals greater than 50 ms (NN50) and the proportion derived by dividing NN50 by the total number of NN intervals (pNN50) were assessed in three groups of subjects: normotensives having normal BMI (Group 1), prehypertensives having normal BMI (Group 2) and prehypertensives having higher BMI (Group 3). SVI was assessed from LF-HF ratio and correlated with BMI, BHR, BP and RPP in all the groups by Pearson correlation. The contribution of BMI to SVI was assessed by multiple regression analysis.
LF and LFnu were significantly increased and HF and HFnu were significantly decreased in prehypertensive subjects in comparison to normotensive subjects and the magnitude of these changes was more prominent in subjects with higher BMI compared to that of normal BMI. LF-HF ratio, the sensitive indicator of sympathovagal balance had significant correlation with BMI (P = 0.000) and diastolic blood pressure (DBP) (P = 0.002) in prehypertensives. BMI was found to be an independent contributing factor to SVI (P = 0.001) in prehypertensives.
It was concluded that autonomic imbalance in prehypertensives manifested in the form of increased sympathetic activity and vagal inhibition. In prehypertensives with higher BMI, vagal withdrawal was predominant than sympathetic overactivity. Magnitude of SVI (alteration in LF-HF ratio) was linked to changes in BMI and DBP. BMI had an independent influence on LF-HF ratio. It was advised that life-style modifications such as yoga and exercise would enable achieve the sympathovagal balance and blood pressure homeostasis in prehypertensives.
PMCID: PMC3441642  PMID: 22812583
Prehypertension; Heart rate variability; Body mass index; Sympathovagal imbalance; LF-HF ratio
9.  Sympathovagal Imbalance in Prehypertensive Offspring of Two Parents versus One Parent Hypertensive 
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.
PMCID: PMC3202093  PMID: 22121472
10.  Vagal Withdrawal and Sympathetic Overactivity Contribute to the Genesis of Early-Onset Pregnancy-Induced Hypertension 
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.
PMCID: PMC3095942  PMID: 21629868

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