Differently from other vasodilators, the antihypertensive effect of ACE-inhibitors is not accompanied by an increase in resting heart rate which suggests a modulatory action of these drugs on arterial baroreflex control of heart rate. It is debated whether this modulation involve, an increase in gain (or sensitivity) of baroreflex mechanisms controlling heart rate or is due to a baroreflex control resetting. In this study we investigated the arterial baroreflex control of heart rate both in supine rest and during active standing before and after 7 and 30 days of treatment with a new ACE-inhibitor, trandolapril (2 mg per os oid) in 15 mild hypertensive patients. Baroreflex control of heart rate has been dynamically and non-invasively assessed by analysis of the continuous relationship between beat-to-beat spontaneous fluctuations in systolic blood pressure and pulse interval. By this method, sequences of 3 or more consecutive beats in which systolic blood pressure and pulse interval change in the same direction (either increasing or decreasing) are identified and a linear regression is applied to each individual sequence. The mean individual slope of the systolic blood pressure/pulse interval ratio obtained by averaging all slopes computed within a given period, is calculated and taken as an estimate of the spontaneous baroreflex sensitivity for that period. Trandolapril reduced resting blood pressure significantly (from 147.5 +/- 3.3/95.3 +/- 1.5 to 129.5 +/- 3.7/83.6 +/- 1.6 and 126.6 +/- 3.9/84.5 +/- 1.7 mmHg after 7 e 30 days, respectively) without affecting heart rate. The treatment did not alter baroreflex sensitivity but resulted in an apparent leftward shift of the regression line relating systolic blood pressure to pulse interval along the pressure axis, reflecting the lower prevailing level of arterial pressure. The increases in heart rate and blood pressure induced by standing in control conditions were not significantly modified by trandolapril. Baroreflex sensitivity was significantly reduced by standing both in control conditions and, to the same extent, during treatment. These results suggest that ACE-inhibition does not alter the gain of the integrated baroreflex mechanisms controlling heart rate, but results in a baroreflex resetting that may explain the lack of tachycardia normally observed during antihypertensive therapy with ACE-inhibitors.
|Translated title of the contribution||Spontaneous baroreflex control of heart rate during chronic tandropril therapy|
|Number of pages||7|
|Publication status||Published - Apr 1998|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine