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Arterial blood pressure and heart rate response in patients with acute ischemic stroke - Correlation with the severity of cardiovascular autonomic dysfunction

Darina Georgieva, Silva Andonova, Evgeniya Kalevska, Tihomir Drenski, Mila Boyadzhieva


Background and purpose:

Despite numerous studies, the mechanisms of blood pressure and heart rate regulation in cerebrovascular diseases remain not completely understood. The aim of the study was to determine the changes in blood pressure (BP) and heart rate (HR) in patients with an acute hemispheric ischemic stroke and to seek a relation to the severity of the cardiovascular autonomic dysfunction.


20 healthy volunteers and 50 patients with an acute hemispheric ischemic stroke participated in the study. The values of BP and HR were registered. Cardiovascular autonomous disorders were examined with "Ewing battery" tests. Patients were divided into two groups according to the severity of the autonomous disorders.


Elevated BP values at admission were observed in 56% of our patients, and significantly higher values of systolic blood pressure (SBP) (p <0,001), diastolic blood pressure (DBP) (p = 0,001), and mean arterial pressure (p <0,001), as well as of the heart rate (p = 0,027) were found, compared to the control group. The most significantly increased values of the indicators were reported in patients with a stroke in the territory of the right middle cerebral artery with an involvement of the insular cortex. The results of the t-test performed, showed correlation only between the systolic blood pressure and the severity of the autonomic dysfunction, the values being significantly higher in patients with severe autonomic disorders (t = -2,14; p = 0.036).


A variability in BP and HR with a tendency to increase was observed in patients with an acute hemispheric ischemic stroke (ICS) compared to controls, with the highest values reported in patients with ICS in the territory of right middle cerebral artery (TRMCA) with the involvement of the insular cortex (IC). A positive correlation was found between the values of systolic blood pressure (SBP) and the severity of autonomic dysfunction (AD).


cardiovascular autonomic dysfunction, stroke, blood pressure

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About The Authors

Darina Georgieva
Medical University of Varna

Silva Andonova

Evgeniya Kalevska

Tihomir Drenski

Mila Boyadzhieva

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