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Eur J Clin Invest. 2011 Nov;41(11):1180-5. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2362.2011.02523.x. Epub 2011 Mar 24.

Hormonal and plasma volume changes after presyncope.

Author information

1
Institute of Adaptive and Spaceflight Physiology, Graz, Austria. helmut.hinghofer@medunigraz.at

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Aim of this study was to test the hypothesis that after presyncope, some blood hormone pools increase while others decrease.

MATERIALS AND METHODS:

In twelve healthy male adults, we determined plasma volume changes with plasma mass densitometry and hormone levels. The following were compared: supine rest, presyncope and 20-min post-presyncopal supine rest. We determined plasma renin activity (PRA), aldosterone, adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH), adrenomedullin and vasopressin (AVP) from venous blood samples.

RESULTS:

Using passive 4-min 70° head-up tilt followed by 4-min sequences of additional lower body negative pressure of increasing intensity (15 mmHg steps), presyncope occurred after 11·6 ± 2·8 min, at which time plasma volume was reduced by 15·5 ± 7·4%, aldosterone increased by 37%, ACTH by 75%, PRA by 187% and AVP about 16-fold in average (all P < 0·01); no significant changes in adrenomedullin were seen. Twenty-min post-presyncope, ACTH increased above presyncopal levels (+36%, P < 0·05), aldosterone by 35% (P = 0·07). PRA (-47%, P < 0·01) and AVP (-84%, P < 0·05) decreased below presyncopal but were still above supine control (P < 0·01); similarly, plasma density fell by 2·17 ± 0·97 g L(-1) below presyncopal (P < 0·01), but above supine control (P < 0·05), indicating rapid recovery (83% of initial plasma volume).

CONCLUSIONS:

We conclude that during the 20-min supine post-syncopal period, plasma volume, PRA and AVP return closer to baseline but aldosterone and ACTH continue increasing. The magnitude of observed concentration changes cannot be explained by haemoconcentration/haemodilution, rather it appears that the observed changes are indicative of hormone-specific endocrine activation patterns in the recovery phase.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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