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Clin Neurophysiol. 2004 Jun;115(6):1473-8.

Cardiovascular autonomic dysfunction correlates with brain MRI lesion load in MS.

Author information

  • 1Department of Neurology, Oulu University Hospital, P.O. Box 25, 90029 OYS, Oulu, Finland. anne.saari@ppshp.fi

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

The aim of the present study was to investigate the cardiovascular autonomic control in clinically definite multiple sclerosis (MS) patients with a standardised battery of cardiovascular tests and to correlate these findings with the brain magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) lesion load.

METHODS:

Fifty-one patients with MS and 50 healthy controls were studied. Brain MRI was performed in all patients showing typical MS lesions. The cardiovascular tests were carried out using a standardised battery.

RESULTS:

Heart rate (HR) responses to deep breathing (P < 0.05) and tilt table testing (P < 0.001) were significantly decreased in MS patients when compared to those of the controls. Blood pressure (BP) responses in the tilt table test were also impaired in MS patients (diastolic P < 0.001, systolic P < 0.05). Of the different brain areas investigated the total volume of the midbrain MRI lesions (P < 0.05) was the one most clearly associated with the impaired BP responses.

CONCLUSIONS:

MS results in both reduced HR variation and decreased BP reactions indicating disturbed cardiovascular regulation. In particular, the midbrain lesions found in MS are associated with cardiovascular dysfunction.

PMID:
15134718
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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