An exaggerated blood pressure response to treadmill exercise does not increase the likelihood that exercise echocardiograms are abnormal in men or women

Traci L. Jurrens, Aaron M. From, Garvan C. Kane, Sharon L. Mulvagh, Patricia A. Pellikka, Robert B. Mccully

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background: Some experts have suggested that patients with exaggerated blood pressure responses during exercise echocardiography are more likely to have abnormal exercise echocardiographic findings and less likely to have angiographically significant coronary artery disease than patients with normal blood pressure responses. The aim of this study was to evaluate the impact of exercise blood pressure on exercise echocardiographic findings and subsequent angiographic results in men and women. Methods: In this retrospective study, clinical, exercise, and echocardiographic characteristics of patients who underwent treadmill exercise echocardiography over a 2-year period were examined, and the angiographic findings of the subgroup of patients who subsequently underwent coronary angiography within 30 days were analyzed. Results: Among the 7,015 patients (mean age, 61 ± 13 years), 3,992 were men (57%). The likelihood of patients' having abnormal exercise echocardiographic results was similar at all levels of exercise blood pressure, except in men who had low peak systolic blood pressures (<120 mm Hg); they had the highest rate of abnormal exercise echocardiographic findings. Of the 3,225 patients without histories of hypertension or coronary artery disease, 3,098 had peak systolic blood pressures of 120 to 219 mm Hg (a "normal" blood pressure response), and 59 had peak systolic blood pressures ≥ 220 mm Hg (an exaggerated blood pressure response). These patients with exaggerated blood pressure responses were just as likely to have normal exercise echocardiographic results as those who had normal blood pressure responses (85% vs 83%, P >.99). A subgroup of 508 patients underwent coronary angiography. The rate of false-positive findings was similar for patients who had exaggerated blood pressure responses and those who had normal blood pressure responses. The false-positive rate tended to be lower in patients who had low blood pressure responses. Conclusions: Patients who have exaggerated blood pressure responses to exercise are not more likely to have abnormal exercise echocardiographic findings than those with normal blood pressure responses. The majority of patients who have echocardiographic abnormalities and subsequently undergo coronary angiography have substantial (≥50% stenosis) coronary artery disease.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1113-1119
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of the American Society of Echocardiography
Volume25
Issue number10
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 1 2012

Keywords

  • Blood pressure
  • Exercise
  • Stress echocardiography

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine

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