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Biomed Pharmacother. 2004 Oct;58 Suppl 1:S40-4.

Assessment of autonomic activity during daily life of patients with head-up tilt-induced prolonged asystole.

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National Defense Medical College Research Institute, Division of Biomedical Engineering, 3-2, Namiki Tokorozawa City, Saitama 359-8513, Japan.


Autonomic activity is important in the pathophysiology of neurally mediated syncope (NMS) patients diagnosed by the head-up tilt (HUT) test, and prolonged systole induced by HUT is associated with a malignant vasovagal syndrome. This study investigated whether or not daily autonomic activity evaluated by heart rate variability (HRV) assessed through 24-hour ambulatory ECG monitoring was augumented in HUT-induced asystole (AS; > 30 s) and whether or not HRV differed between NMS patients with and without AS. Ambulatory ECG monitoring was performed in 176 patients with suspected NMS and in 62 age-matched healthy control subjects (C group, age: 36 +/- 13 yr), with HRV time and frequency domain indices measured within 48 hours of HUT. Six patients displayed prolonged AS (PAS group, age: 33 +/- 12 yr), and 109 patients had positive HUT (P group, age: 29 +/- 17 yr), while 61 patients had negative HUT (N group, age: 40 +/- 18 yr). Several HRV indices in the P group were higher than those in the N and C groups. However, HRV indices did not differ between the P group and the PAS group. It is concluded that impairment of autonomic activity specifically related to orthostatic stress could be important in the pathophysiology of HUT-induced prolonged asystole, while impairment of autonomic activity in daily life is not as important in NMS patients with HUT-induced prolonged asystole.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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