How Much Hypertension Can Be Affected By Daytime Stress?

A group of Italian investigators led by Drs Francesco Fallo (Department of Medical and Surgical Sciences, University of Padova) and Dr Nicoletta Sonino (Department of Mental Health, Padova) explores a neglected issue: the relationship between daytime stress and the physiological lowering of blood pressure which should occur during sleep (dipping).

Scarce data are available on the influence of psychological aspects on 24-hour ambulatory blood pressure patterns either in normotensive or hypertensive subjects. This study was designed to evaluate the relationship between psychological profile and changes in daytime/nighttime blood pressure rhythm. Nocturnal dipping was defined as the night/day ratio of ambulatory mean systolic and/or diastolic blood pressure 0.87.

Three-hundred and two outpatients underwent 24-hour ambulatory blood pressure monitoring. They were administered a self-rating scale, the Psychosocial Index, as an indicator of stress, psychological distress, sleep disturbances, well-being, abnormal illness behavior and quality of life.. Patients were divided according to the presence (n = 125) or absence (n = 177) of night blood pressure dipping.

Dippers had lower (p < 0.001) nocturnal systolic and diastolic blood pressure than nondippers, and higher (p < 0.05) daytime diastolic blood pressure. Patients with nocturnal blood pressure decline had a markedly higher (p < 0.001) level of stress than nondippers. When the sample was divided according to the presence or absence of hypertension, only subjects with normal blood pressure showed nocturnal dipping associated with increased stressful life circumstances. The findings indicate that dippers experience stressful life circumstances, both in terms of life events and chronic stress. This suggests that stress-reducing techniques may be particularly helpful in the setting of hypertension characterized by nighttime blood pressure dipping.

Media Contact

Francesco Fallo alfa

Further information:

http://www.karger.com

All news from this category: Health and Medicine

This subject area encompasses research and studies in the field of human medicine.

Among the wide-ranging list of topics covered here are anesthesiology, anatomy, surgery, human genetics, hygiene and environmental medicine, internal medicine, neurology, pharmacology, physiology, urology and dental medicine.

Back to the Homepage

Comments (0)

Write comment

Latest posts

New EU project on effects of micro- and nanoplastics in agriculture

The University of Bayreuth is a partner in the new European “PAPILLONS” consortium for micro- and nanoplastics research in agriculture. 20 universities and research institutions from 12 countries will jointly…

Coral on the Red List of Endangered Species

The traits of coral species that have become extinct during the last few million years do not match those of coral species deemed at risk of extinction today. In a…

Seeking a faster pathway to synthetic data

Helmholtz Association funds project for data acquisition using neural networks. In addition to experimentally generated data, fundamental research in physics also works with synthetically generated data. Acquisition of such data…

Partners & Sponsors