Distribution and observed associations of orthostatic blood pressure changes in elderly general medicine outpatients

David Robertson, Jeff A. Desjardin, Michael J. Lichtenstein

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations

Abstract

Factors associated with orthostatic blood pressure change in elderly outpatients were determined by surveying 398 medical clinical outpatients aged 65 years and older. Blood pressure was measured with random-zero sphygmomanometers after patients were 5 minutes in a supine and 5 minutes in a standing position. Orthostatic blood pressure changes were at normally distributed levels with systolic and diastolic pressures dropping an average of 4 mm Hg (standard deviation [SD] = 15 mm Hg) and 2 mm Hg (SD = 11 mm Hg), respectively. Orthostatic blood pressure changes were unassociated with age, race, sex, body mass, time since eating, symptoms, or other factors. According to multiple linear regression analysis, supine systolic pressure, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and diabetes mellitus were associated with a decrease in systolic pressure on standing. Hypertension, antiarthritic drugs, and abnormal heartbeat were associated with an increase in systolic pressure on standing. For orthostatic diastolic pressure changes, supine diastolic pressure and COPD were associated with a decrease in diastolic pressure on standing. Congestive heart failure was associated with an increase in standing diastolic pressure. Using logistic regression analysis, only supine systolic pressure was associated with a greater than 20-mm Hg drop in systolic pressure (n = 53, prevalence = 13%). Supine diastolic pressure and COPD were the only variables associated with a greater than 20-mm Hg drop in diastolic pressure (n = 16, prevalence = 4%). These factors may help physicians in identifying older persons at risk for having orthostatic hypotension.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)287-295
Number of pages9
JournalAmerican Journal of the Medical Sciences
Volume315
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - 1998

Keywords

  • Autonomic
  • Blood pressure
  • Heart failure
  • Hypotension
  • Syncope

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

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