Effects of age on body temperature and blood pressure in cold environments

Clin Sci (Lond). 1985 Oct;69(4):465-70. doi: 10.1042/cs0690465.


Mean deep body temperature fell by 0.4 +/- 0.1 (SD) degrees C in five sedentary, clothed 63-70 year old men and by 0.1 +/- 0.1 degrees C in four young adults after 2 h exposure in still air at 6 degrees C (P less than 0.001). The mean increase in systolic and diastolic pressure was significantly greater (P less than 0.002) in the older subjects (24 +/- 4 mmHg systolic, 13 +/- 4 mmHg diastolic) than in the young (14 +/- 6 mmHg systolic, 7 +/- 3 mmHg diastolic) after 2 h at 6 degrees C. A small rise in blood pressure occurred in the older men at 12 degrees C, but there was no increase in either group at 15 degrees C. The association of variables is particularly marked between systolic blood pressure and core temperature changes at 6 degrees C. There were no appreciable cold-adaptive changes in blood pressure or thermoregulatory responses after 7-10 days repeated exposure to 6 degrees C for 4 h each day. Blood pressure elevation in the cold was slower but more marked in the older men. These changes in blood pressure may provide a possible basis for delineating low domestic limiting temperature conditions.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Controlled Clinical Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aging*
  • Blood Pressure*
  • Body Temperature*
  • Cold Temperature*
  • Heart Rate
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Skin Temperature