OBJECTIVE: Patients with intermittent claudication (IC) often have high blood pressure (BP), which increases their cardiovascular risk. However, whether walking capacity is associated with BP levels in patients with IC remains unknown. Therefore, this study was designed to investigate whether the total walking distance is associated with ambulatory BP in patients with IC.
PARTICIPANTS AND METHODS: This was a cross-sectional study of 75 patients with IC (58 men; 17 women). A maximal treadmill test (Gardner protocol) was performed to assess total walking distance in these patients. Furthermore, ambulatory BP, heart rate, rate-pressure product, and BP load were obtained over a 24-h period. One-way analysis of variance and multiple linear regression were carried out.
RESULTS: Walking capacity was correlated negatively with the following: (i) asleep systolic BP, diastolic BP, mean BP and heart rate; (ii) 24-h, awake and asleep RPP; and (iii) awake and asleep systolic BP load (all P<0.05). These associations occurred irrespective of confounders such as age, sex, BMI, smoking status, and number of antihypertensive medications.
CONCLUSION: A better walking capacity is associated with lower ambulatory BP parameters in patients with IC.