Evaluation of arterial compliance-pressure curves. Effect of antihypertensive drugs.
A new high-precision ultrasonic device was developed to determine noninvasively arterial compliance as a function of blood pressure. Because of the nonlinear elastic properties of arterial walls, measurements of compliance can be appropriately compared only if obtained over a range of pressures. This apparatus was used to evaluate in a double-blind, parallel fashion the effect of three different antihypertensive drugs and of a placebo on radial artery compliance. Thirty-two normotensive volunteers were randomly allocated to an 8-day, once-a-day oral treatment with either a placebo, 100 mg atenolol, 20 mg nitrendipine, or 20 mg lisinopril. Blood pressure, heart rate, radial artery diameter, and arterial compliance were measured immediately before as well as 6 hours after dosing on the first and last days of the study. On the eighth day of administration, within 6 hours after dosing, lisinopril induced an acute increase in radial artery diameter, from 2.99 +/- 0.06 to 3.28 +/- 0.09 mm (mean +/- SEM, p less than 0.01). The compliance-pressure curve was shifted upward on day 1 (p less than 0.01) as well as on day 8 (p less than 0.05). None of the other drugs induced any significant modification of these parameters. Arterial compliance has a strong nonlinear dependency on intra-arterial pressure and therefore has to be defined as a function of pressure. Antihypertensive drugs acting by different mechanisms may have different effects on the mechanical properties of large arteries.
- Copyright © 1991 by American Heart Association