Aim: To compare ambulatory recordings of heart rate and blood pressure in adolescents with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) and healthy controls. We hypothesized both heart rate and blood pressure to be elevated among CFS patients.
Methods: 44 CFS patients aged 12-18 years were recruited from our paediatric outpatient clinic. The controls were 52 healthy adolescents having similar distribution of age and gender. 24-hours ambulatory blood pressure and heart rate was recorded using a validated, portable oscillometric device.
• At night (sleep), heart rate, mean arterial blood pressure and diastolic blood pressure were significantly higher in CFS patients as compared to controls (p < 0.01).
• During daytime, heart rate was significantly higher among CFS patients (p < 0.05), whereas blood pressures were equal among the two groups.
• The findings support previous experimental evidence of sympathetic predominance of cardiovascular control in adolescent CFS patients.
• Also, the findings prompt increased focus on cardiovascular risk assessment, and suggest a possible target for therapeutic intervention.
[Note: a companion paper published in this issue - “Polymorphisms of Adrenergic Cardiovascular Control Genes are Associated with Adolescent Chronic Fatigue Syndrome” - reports differences in adolescents with CFS vs healthy controls in certain genes affecting orthostatic regulation/heart rate variability.]
Source: Acta Paediatrica, Nov 9, 2010. PMID: 21059182, by Hurum H, Sulheim D, Thaulow E, Wyller VB. Division of Paediatrics, Oslo University Hospital, Oslo, Norway Department of Pediatrics, Østfold Hospital, Fredrikstad, Norway Department of Pediatrics, Innlandet Hospital, Lillehammer, Norway.