Background: Arterial stiffness, measured as aortic pulse wave velocity (PWV), and wave reflection, measured as augmentation index (AIx), are independent predictors for total and cardiovascular morbidity and mortality. The aim of this study was to compare a new device, based on oscillometric pressure curves (Arteriograph), which simultaneously measures PWV and AIx, with standard techniques for measuring PWV (Complior) and AIx (SphygmoCor) in untreated hypertensive patients.
Methods: We compared PWV and AIx measured using the Arteriograph with corresponding Complior and SphygmoCor measurements in 254 untreated hypertensive patients, age 48 +/- 14 years (mean +/- SD, range 17-85 years).
Results: Arteriograph PWV and AIx were closely related with Complior (r = 0.60, P < 0.001) and SphygmoCor (r = 0.89, P < 0.001), respectively. Using stepwise regression analysis, the independent determinants of Arteriograph PWV were age, mean arterial pressure, heart rate and sex (r(2) = 0.44, P < 0.0001) and for AIx were age, weight, mean arterial pressure, heart rate and sex (r(2) = 0.65, P < 0.0001). The bias between the different techniques was determined by age and sex for PWV and age, body weight, sex, heart rate and mean arterial pressure for AIx. Bland-Altman plots showed that although the techniques were closely related, the limits of agreement were wide.
Conclusion: Although Arteriograph values and the determinants of PWV and AIx are in close agreement with corresponding parameters obtained by Complior and SphygmoCor, respectively, the techniques are not interchangeable.