Effect of transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation on peripheral to central blood pressure ratio in healthy subjects

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Abstract

Purpose:

To investigate the effect of transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) on the arterial stiffness in healthy young adult and middle-aged men using the augmentation index (AI-x) and hemodynamic measures.

Methods:

Twenty-four men (12 aged 27·25 ± 5·53 years and 12 aged 54·83 ± 5·10 years) were randomly allocated to two subgroups: TENS or placebo in ganglion region for 45 min. The AI-x and hemodynamic measures [late systolic blood pressure (SBP), central blood pressure (CBP), difference between P1 and P2 (ΔP) and tension time index (TTI)] were determined before and after protocols.

Results:

TENS resulted in reduction of SBP in younger adults (TENSpre: 111 ± 2; post: 105 ± 2·2 mm Hg; PLACEBOpre: 113 ± 1·8; post: 114 ± 2·5 mm Hg; GEE, P<0·01), whereas no difference was found in middle-aged group. TENS also resulted in reduction of AI-x younger adults group (TENSpre: 56 ± 2·8; post: 53 ± 2%; PLACEBOpre: 55 ± 3; post: 58 ± 2·5%; GEE, P<0·01). ΔP and TTI were significantly decreased after the application of TENS in both groups, but significantly greater reductions in TTI and the SBP/CBP ratio were found in the group of younger adults.

Conclusions:

The acute application of ganglion TENS attenuated arterial stiffness in younger adults as well as hemodynamic measures in the middle-aged group. This method could emerge as effective therapy for the management of arterial blood pressure.

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