BACKGROUND: Although hypertension is an established risk factor for severe COVID-19 illness, little is known about the effects of COVID-19 on blood pressure (BP). Central BP measures taken over a 24-hour period using ambulatory blood pressure monitoring (ABPM) adds prognostic value in assessing cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk compared to brachial BP measures taken at a single time point. We assessed CVD risk between adults with and without a history of COVID-19 via appraisal of 24-hour brachial and central hemodynamic load from ABPM.
METHODS: Cross-sectional analysis was performed on 32 adults who tested positive for COVID-19 (29±13 years, 22 females) and 43 adults without a history of COVID-19 (28±12 years, 26 females). Measures of 24-hour hemodynamic load included brachial and central systolic and diastolic BP, pulse pressure, augmentation index (AIx), pulse wave velocity (PWV), nocturnal BP dipping, the ambulatory arterial stiffness index (AASI), and the blood pressure variability ratio (BPVR).
RESULTS: Participants who tested positive for COVID-19 experienced 6±4 COVID-19 symptoms, were studied 122±123 days after testing positive, and had mild-to-moderate COVID-19 illness. The results from independent samples t-tests showed no significant differences in any of our 24-hour, daytime, or nighttime measures of central or peripheral hemodynamic load across those with and without a history of COVID-19 (p > 0.05 for all).
CONCLUSIONS: No differences in 24-hour brachial or central ABPM measures were detected between adults recovering from mild-to-moderate COVID-19 and controls without a history of COVID-19. Adults recovering from mild-to-moderate COVID-19 do not have increased 24-hour central hemodynamic load.
- vascular stiffness