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A ‘pressure-time index’ for assessing the severity of essential hypertension

Zakopoulos, Nikos A.1; Toumanidis, Savas T.1; Barlas, Gerassimos J.2; Nanas, Serafim N.1; Lekakis, John P.1; Stamatelopoulos, Stamatios F.1,3; Moulopoulos, Spyridon D.1

Original Articles

Objective A new derivative of 24 h ambulatory blood pressure monitoring (ABPM) is introduced and its association with left ventricular mass index (LVMI) in essential hypertension is examined.

Patient population One hundred and fifty-three previously untreated essential hypertension patients.

Methods Patients underwent casual blood pressure (BP) readings, 24 h ABPM and left ventricular echocardiographic assessment. The following 24 h awake and sleep ABP variables were calculated: mean systolic and diastolic BP, systolic and diastolic BP loads (percentage of systolic readings > 140/120 mmHg (day/night) and diastolic readings > 90/80 mmHg (day/night)), standard deviation of systolic and diastolic ABP and nocturnal fall of systolic BP, as well as the integrated areas under the ABP curve. The area under the BP curve divided in horizontal slices was accurately modelled by a sigmoid curve. The parameters controlling the shape of the curve and in particular that regarding its ‘slope’ is hereafter called the ‘pressure-time index’.

Results ‘Systolic pressure-time index 24 h’ (SPTI24) is related to left ventricular mass index (multivariate analysis, P = 0.008). Using either partial correlation coefficients or a multivariate analysis, SPTI24 is related to left ventricular mass index, independently of age, casual blood pressure, mean systolic and diastolic ABP, systolic and diastolic BP loads, BP variability (standard deviation (SD), nocturnal fall of systolic BP) and integrated area under the curve (multivariate analysis, P = 0.004).

Conclusions In essential hypertension, the SPTI24 is related to LVMI independently of age, casual blood pressure, integrated area under the curve or any other derivative of 24 h ABPM, and might be used to assess the extent of hypertensive load.

1Athens University, Division of Medicine, Department of Clinical Therapeutics, Athens, Greece

2Department of Electrical & Computer Engineering, National Technical University of Athens, Athens, Greece.

3Correspondence and requests for reprints to Professor S. Stamatelopoulos, Alexandra University Hospital, 80 Vas. Sofias – K. Lourou Street, Athens 115 28, Greece. Tel: +301 7791694; fax: +301 7770473

Received 12 November 1998 Revised 18 May 1999 Accepted 5 July 1999

© 1999 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.