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Cardiovascular and plasma catecholamine responses to exercise in blacks and whites

, : Cardiovascular and plasma catecholamine responses to exercise in blacks and whites. Hypertension 20(4): 542-548

The purpose of the present study was to assess possible racial differences in cardiovascular and plasma catecholamine responses to dynamic exercise. A biracial group of normotensive college-age men (15 blacks, 15 whites) were tested for maximal oxygen uptake, resting blood pressure, and heart rate. Subjects then rode a cycle ergometer at 25%, 50%, and 75% of peak oxygen uptake (6 minutes at each stage). Blood pressure and heart rate were measured during supine rest, seated rest, and at each stage of exercise with an automated blood pressure monitor. At each stage, venous blood was sampled to allow determination of plasma norepinephrine and epinephrine, and cardiac output was measured with the carbon dioxide rebreathing technique. The results indicated that resting blood pressure was similar for blacks and whites (114/68 versus 115/68 mm Hg, respectively). Blacks exhibited greater systolic and diastolic blood pressures during submaximal dynamic exercise. However, blacks also showed a trend toward a positive parental history of hypertension, which has been associated with an increased pressor response. Racial differences did not exist for heart rate or cardiac output, but blacks had higher values for total peripheral resistance both at rest and during exercise. Although no overall racial differences were seen for plasma catecholamine concentrations at rest, blacks had significantly lower levels of norepinephrine (1,275 versus 1,556 ng/ml) and higher levels of epinephrine (306 versus 216 pg/ml) than whites at the highest work rate. The current study confirms the increased pressor response to exercise in normotensive blacks. Blacks had an elevation in total peripheral resistance that was not accompanied by an increase in plasma norepinephrine levels.


PMID: 1398889

DOI: 10.1161/01.HYP.20.4.542

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