This study aimed to examine the changes in RR interval and blood pressure (BP) variability and humoral factors during postural changes in borderline arterial hypertension. Twenty-nine patients (44 ± 3 year; BP, 145 ± 3/84 ± 3 mm Hg) with borderline hypertension and a control group of 38 subjects (35 ± 2 year; BP, 123 ± 3/70 ± 2 mm Hg) underwent power spectrum analysis of RR interval and BP (low frequency (LF), 0.05 to 0.15 Hz; high frequency (HF), 0.15 to 0.40 Hz) in the supine and standing positions. Concentrations of plasma renin activity, angiotensin II, and aldosterone in supine and standing positions had been determined in the hypertensive group. Borderline hypertensives are characterized by higher oscillations of systolic and diastolic BP, but not of RR interval in the supine position versus the control group. Low frequency and HF components of systolic and diastolic BP expressed as absolute data are also significantly higher in borderline hypertensives. Moreover, standing tended to increase the LF/HF ratio of both RR interval and BP variability compared to controls. The standing position was able to further activate the LF but not the HF component of BP variability. In borderline hypertension renin release during postural changes correlated well with the decrease in the power of the HF vagal component of RR interval variability (r = −0.70, P < .001) and with the increase of the LF component of diastolic blood pressure variability (r = 0.43, P < .03). In conclusion, our results indicate that in borderline arterial hypertension, LF and HF oscillations of BP are already significantly increased at rest. Standing was capable of significantly activating the LF component, but not the HF component, of BP variability.
- Borderline arterial hypertension
- Plasma renin activity
- Postural changes
- Power spectral analysis