Spontaneous baroreflex by sequence and power spectral methods in humans

Clin Physiol. 1993 Nov;13(6):663-76. doi: 10.1111/j.1475-097x.1993.tb00481.x.


Beat-by-beat variations in blood pressure and RR-interval are interrelated by the actions of baroreflex and non-baroreflex responses. This study had two purposes: (1) to examine the spontaneous relationships between RR-interval and systolic blood pressure to determine the relative occurrence of baroreflex and non-baroreflex responses in humans, and (2) to compare the beat-sequence method with a cross spectral estimate of the baroreflex response slope. Eight healthy men were studied during 10 h of quiet, seated rest, and six men and three women were studied during rest, rest plus fixed pace breathing, and a cold pressor test. RR-interval and continuous, non-invasive arterial blood pressure were measured with a computerized system. A baroreflex sequence was defined by a series of at least three consecutive heart beats in which systolic pressure and the following RR-interval either both increased or both decreased. A non-baroreflex relationship was defined by sequences of at least three beats by opposite directional changes of RR-interval and systolic pressure of that beat. The results showed that there were approximately 30% as many non-baroreflex compared to baroreflex slopes. Individual subject mean baroreflex and non-baroreflex slopes were highly correlated (r = 0.72, P < 0.001). Absolute slope values were not different, and they were unaffected by time, fixed pace breathing, or cold pressor test. The data showed the relatively simple beat-by-beat sequence method to yield spontaneous baroreflex response slopes that were quantitatively similar to, and highly correlated with (r = 0.85-0.94), baroreflex response slopes calculated by spectral analysis methods.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Baroreflex / physiology*
  • Blood Pressure / physiology*
  • Cold Temperature
  • Electrocardiography
  • Female
  • Heart Rate / physiology
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Parasympathetic Nervous System / physiology
  • Pressoreceptors / physiology
  • Regression Analysis
  • Respiratory Mechanics / physiology
  • Rest / physiology
  • Sympathetic Nervous System / physiology