The reliability of a single protocol to determine endothelial, microvascular and autonomic functions in adolescents
Clinical Physiology and Functional Imaging
Wiley /Scandinavian Society of Clinical Physiology and Nuclear Medicine
Reason for embargo
BACKGROUND: Impairments in macrovascular, microvascular and autonomic function are present in asymptomatic youths with clustered cardiovascular disease risk factors. This study determines the within-day reliability and between-day reliability of a single protocol to non-invasively assess these outcomes in adolescents. METHODS: Forty 12- to 15-year-old adolescents (20 boys) visited the laboratory in a fasted state on two occasions, approximately 1 week apart. One hour after a standardized cereal breakfast, macrovascular function was determined via flow-mediated dilation (FMD). Heart rate variability (root mean square of successive R-R intervals; RMSSD) was determined from the ECG-gated ultrasound images acquired during the FMD protocol prior to cuff occlusion. Microvascular function was simultaneously quantified as the peak (PRH) and total (TRH) hyperaemic response to occlusion in the cutaneous circulation of the forearm via laser Doppler imaging. To address within-day reliability, a subset of twenty adolescents (10 boys) repeated these measures 90 min afterwards on one occasion. RESULTS: The within-day typical error and between-day typical error expressed as a coefficient of variation of these outcomes are as follows: ratio-scaled FMD, 5·1% and 10·6%; allometrically scaled FMD, 4·4% and 9·4%; PRH, 11% and 13·3%; TRH, 29·9% and 23·1%; and RMSSD, 17·6% and 17·6%. The within- and between-day test-retest correlation coefficients for these outcomes were all significant (r > 0·54 for all). CONCLUSION: Macrovascular, microvascular and autonomic functions can be simultaneously and non-invasively determined in adolescents using a single protocol with an appropriate degree of reproducibility. Determining these outcomes may provide greater understanding of the progression of cardiovascular disease and aid early intervention.
This study was supported by the Physiological Society
This is the author accepted manuscript. The final version is available from Wiley via the DOI in this record.
Published online 22 March 2016