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Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 2009 Feb;50(2):760-4. doi: 10.1167/iovs.08-2508. Epub 2008 Oct 3.

Intraocular pressure increases in parallel with systemic blood pressure during isometric exercise.

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Center for Eye Research, University of Oslo, Oslo, Norway.



Normal-tension glaucoma has been found to be related to transient increases in intraocular pressure (IOP). Isometric exercise induces a pressor response with a characteristic increase in blood pressure. The purpose of the present study was to investigate how transient changes in systemic blood pressure, induced by isometric exercise, affect IOP.


Nine healthy volunteers participated in the study. Systemic blood pressure, heart rate (ECG) and IOP (electronic continuous-indentation tonometer) were recorded continuously before, during, and after a 2-minute period of isometric exercise (40% maximum voluntary contraction of the forearm).


During the 2-minute isometric exercise, heart rate increased from 74+/-6 beats/min (mean +/- SEM) to 93+/-6 beats/min (P<0.005) and systolic and diastolic arterial blood pressure increased from 125+/-6 to 169+/-8 mm Hg (P<0.005) and from 65+/-3 to 96+/-5 mm Hg (P<0.005), respectively. IOP increased from 15+/-1 mm Hg at rest to 19+/-2 mm Hg at the end of the isometric exercise (P<0.005).


During isometric exercise, IOP increased continuously, as long as the isometric exercise persisted, in parallel to the increase in systemic blood pressure.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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