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Chronobiol Int. 2009 Aug;26(6):1189-205. doi: 10.3109/07420520903206294.

Circadian pattern of ambulatory blood pressure in untreated hypertensive patients with and without metabolic syndrome.

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Bioengineering Laboratory, University of Vigo Campus Universitario, Vigo, Spain.


There is a strong association between metabolic syndrome (MS) and increased risk of end-organ damage, cardiovascular disease, stroke, and cardiovascular mortality. Moreover, non-dipping (<10% decline in the asleep relative to the awake blood pressure [BP] mean) and elevated ambulatory pulse pressure (PP), among other factors related to the circadian BP pattern, have also been associated with increased cardiovascular morbidity and mortality. This cross-sectional study investigated the circadian BP pattern in 2,045 non-diabetic untreated patients with uncomplicated essential hypertension (941 men/1,099 women), 48.7+/-11.9 yrs of age, classified by the presence or absence of MS. BP was measured by ambulatory monitoring for 48 consecutive hours to substantiate reproducibility of the dipping pattern. Physical activity was simultaneously monitored every min by wrist actigraphy to accurately calculate mean BP when awake and asleep for each subject. MS was present in 40.7% of the patients. Patients with MS were characterized by a significantly higher 24 h mean of systolic BP and a lower diastolic BP compared to patients without MS. Accordingly, ambulatory PP was significantly elevated the entire 24 h in MS patients. The prevalence of an altered non-dipper BP profile was significantly higher in MS patients (48.4 vs. 36.1% in patients without MS, p < 0.001). MS patients were characterized, among other risk factors, by significantly higher uric acid, fibrinogen, leukocyte count, hemoglobin and globular sedimentation velocity, plus lower estimated glomerular filtration rate. Apart from corroborating the significant increased prevalence of a blunted nocturnal BP decline in MS, this study documents ambulatory PP is higher in MS, without differences between groups in mean arterial pressure. This elevated PP might reflect increased arterial stiffness in MS. MS patients were also characterized by elevated values of relevant markers of cardiovascular risk, including fibrinogen and globular sedimentation velocity. These collective findings indicate that MS should be included among the clinical situations in which ambulatory BP monitoring is recommended.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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