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Sympathetic influence on cardiovascular responses to sustained head-up tilt in humans


, : Sympathetic influence on cardiovascular responses to sustained head-up tilt in humans. Acta Physiologica Scandinavica 155(4): 435-444

Sympathetic beta-adrenergic influences on cardiovascular responses to 50 degrees head-up tilt were evaluated with metoprolol (beta 1-blockade; 0.29 mg kg-1) and propranolol (beta 1 and beta 2-blockade; 0.28 mg kg-1) in eight males. A normotensive-tachycardic phase was followed by a hypotensive-bradycardic episode associated with presyncopal symptoms after 23 +/- 3 min (control, mean +/- SE). Head-up tilt made thoracic electrical impedance (3.0 +/- 1.0 omega), mean arterial pressure (MAP, 86 +/- 4-93 +/- 4 mmHg), heart rate (HR, 63 +/- 3-99 +/- 10 beats min-1) and total peripheral resistance (TPR, 15 +/- 1-28 +/- 4 mmHg min L-1) increase, while central venous oxygen saturation (74 +/- 2-58 +/- 4%), cardiac output (5.7 +/- 0.1-3.1 +/- 0.3 L min-1), stroke volume (95 +/- 6-41 +/- 5 mL) and pulse pressure (55 +/- 4-49 +/- 4 mmHg) decreased (P < 0.05). Central venous pressure decreased during head-up tilt (7 +/- 2-0 +/- 1 mmHg), but it remained stable during the sustained tilt. At the appearance of presyncopal symptoms MAP (49 +/- 3 mmHg), HR (66 +/- 4 beats min-1) and TPR (15 +/- 3 mmHg min L-1) decreased (P < 0.05). Neither metoprolol or propranolol changed tilt tolerance or cardiovascular variables, except for HR that remained at 57 +/- 2 (metoprolol) and 55 +/- 3 beats min-1 (propranolol), and MAP that remained at 87 +/- 5 mmHg during the first phase with metoprolol. In conclusion, sympathetic activation was crucial for the heart rate elevation during normotensive head-up tilt, but not for tilt tolerance or for the associated hypotension and bradycardia.

Accession: 009499888

PMID: 8719263

DOI: 10.1111/j.1748-1716.1995.tb09993.x

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