Objectives It is known that one arm exercise increases the inter-arm diastolic blood pressure difference (dIAD) in young people, but no research was performed in middle-aged and more senior population. This study aimed to determine whether ageing impacts the exercise-induced dIAD in healthy subjects.
Methods Normotensive adults (n = 120) were recruited and divided into the young (22.5 ± 1.5y), middle-aged (42.8 ± 4.6y) and senior (61.0 ± 7.0y) groups. The right arm exercise involved performing cycling movements at 60 times/min for three minutes. Bilateral brachial BPs were simultaneously measured with two automatic BP measurement devices before (baseline), immediately (0), 5, 10 and 15 min after the exercise. The difference of bilateral diastolic BPs was calculated as BP l-r and its absolute value of equal or over 10mmHg was recognised as IAD.
Results At baseline, the SBP l-r and DBP l-r were similar in three age groups. One arm exercise induced markedly DBP decline in the exercised arm, and then increased DBP l-r and dIAD prevalence in three age groups in an age-dependent manner. The dIAD prevalence increased from baseline of zero to 85% at 0 min in young, 37% in middle-aged and 30% in senior groups. One arm exercise did not significantly change SBP l-r and systolic IAD prevalence in three groups. A reverse correlation was found between the DBPl-r 0 and ages (r = –0.359, P < 0.05), but no correlation between ageing and SBPl-r 0.
Conclusions Aging attenuates the levels and duration of inter-arm DBP difference induced by one arm exercise in healthy adults.