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Poor sleep quality is associated with cardiac autonomic dysfunction in treated hypertensive men

Oliveira-Silva, L, Peçanha, T, Fecchio, RY, Rezende, RA, Abreu, A, Silva, G, Mion-Junior, D, Cipolla-Neto, J, Forjaz, CLM and Brito, LC (2020) Poor sleep quality is associated with cardiac autonomic dysfunction in treated hypertensive men. Journal of Clinical Hypertension, 22 (8). pp. 1484-1490. ISSN 1524-6175

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Abstract

Hypertensives present cardiac autonomic dysfunction. Reduction in sleep quality increases blood pressure (BP) and favors hypertension development. Previous studies suggested a relationship between cardiovascular autonomic dysfunction and sleep quality, but it is unclear whether this association is present in hypertensives. Thus, this study evaluated the relationship between sleep quality and cardiac autonomic modulation in hypertensives. Forty-seven middle-aged hypertensive men under consistent anti-hypertensive treatment were assessed for sleep quality by the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI—higher score means worse sleep quality). Additionally, their beat-by-beat BP and heart rate (HR) were recorded, and cardiac autonomic modulation was assessed by their variabilities. Mann-Whitney and t tests were used to compare different sleep quality groups: poor (PSQI > 5, n = 24) vs good (PSQI ≤ 5, n = 23), and Spearman’s correlations to investigate associations between sleep quality and autonomic markers. Patients with poor sleep quality presented lower cardiac parasympathetic modulation (HR high-frequency band = 26 ± 13 vs 36 ± 15 nu, P =.03; HR total variance = 951 ± 1373 vs 1608 ± 2272 ms2, P =.05) and cardiac baroreflex sensitivity (4.5 ± 2.3 vs 7.1 ± 3.7 ms/mm Hg, P =.01). Additionally, sleep quality score presented significant positive correlation with HR (r = +0.34, P =.02) and negative correlations with HR high-frequency band (r = −0.34, P =.03), HR total variance (r = −0.35, P =.02), and cardiac baroreflex sensitivity (r = −0.42, P =.01), showing that poor sleep quality is associated with higher HR and lower cardiac parasympathetic modulation and baroreflex sensitivity. In conclusion, in treated hypertensive men, poor sleep quality is associated with cardiac autonomic dysfunction.

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