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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2016  |  Volume : 8  |  Issue : 6  |  Page : 243-249

Cardiovascular responses to an isometric handgrip exercise in females with prehypertension


1 Department of Recreation, Human Performance and Leisure Studies and Exercise Science and Human Nutrition Laboratory, Howard University Cancer Centre, Washington DC, USA
2 Department of Medicine, Division of Cardiology, Howard College of Medicine and Howard University Hospital, Washington DC, USA
3 Department of Internal Medicine, Howard University Hospital, Washington DC, USA
4 Department of Medical Pharmacology, AUA College of Medicine, Antigua and Barbuda; Manipal University, Manipal, Karnataka, India
5 Department of Behavioural Sciences and Neuroscience, AUA College of Medicine, Antigua And Barbuda
6 Department of Medical Physiology, AUA College of Medicine, Antigua And Barbuda

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Richard M Millis
Department of Medical Physiology, American University of Antigua College of Medicine, Jabberwock Beach Road,
Antigua And Barbuda
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/1947-2714.185032

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Background: Hypertensive individuals are known to exhibit greater increases in blood pressure during an isometric handgrip exercise (IHE) than their normotensive counterparts. Aim: This study tests the hypothesis that, compared to normotensive individuals, prehypertensive individuals exhibit an exaggerated response to IHE. Materials and Methods: In this study, the effects of IHE were compared in matched prehypertensive vs. normotensive healthy African-American females. Six healthy young adult African-American female university students were screened in a physician's office for blood pressure in the range of prehypertension, systolic blood pressure (SBP) 120-139 mmHg and diastolic blood pressure (DBP) 80-89 mmHg. Six young adult African-American women were also recruited to serve as a healthy normotensive control group with SBP ≤119 mmHg and DBP ≤79 mmHg. Cardiovascular fitness was determined by peak oxygen uptake (VO 2 peak) measured during a progressive exercise test. Results: During the handgrip exercise, the prehypertensive group exhibited greater increases in SBP (from 139 ± 6 to 205 ± 11 mmHg, +48%) than the controls (from 132 ± 3 to 145 ± 3 mmHg, +10%); intergroup difference P < 0.001. The prehypertensive group also exhibited greater increases in DBP (from 77 ± 2 to 112 ± 5 mmHg, +46%) compared to the controls (from 72 ± 3 to 78 ± 4 mmHg, +8%); intergroup difference P < 0.001. The increase in systemic vascular resistance was also greater in the prehypertensive group (from 1713 ± 91 to 2807 ± 370 dyne.s.cm -5 , +64%) than in the controls (from 1668 ± 80 to 1812 ± 169 dyne.s.cm -5 , +9%); intergroup difference P < 0.05. Conclusion: These results suggest that blood pressure measurements performed during IHE may be a useful screening tool in evaluating prehypertensive individuals for antihypertensive treatments.


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