Muhammad Qasim Memon.
Hemodynamic effects of repeated bouts of mental stress.
J Liaquat Uni Med Health Sci Jun ;11(3):149-52.

OBJECTIVES: To determine whether repeated stints of mental stress had similar cardiovascular effects (CV) and also to establish that mental arithmetic tasks affect CV parameters and have reproducibility of the effects. DESIGN: Cross Sectional, observation study. SETTING: Medical School, University of Nottingham, UK. METHODS: Ten healthy, white European males participated in this study. Employing a Finometer, beat-to-beat CV parameters were recorded for 30 min baseline. Volunteers undertook mental arithmetic task (MAT) thrice, with different sets of questions each time, displayed as Power Point slides. Fifteen min interval lapsed between the tests; post MAT-3 recordings then continued for 10 min before the experiment ended. RESULTS: No significant difference between the three baseline values was noted. MAT resulted in significant elevation of SBP, 20 mmHg (15%), DBP, 14 mmHg (18%), MAP, 18 mmHg (19%), HR 26 beats/min, i.e., 42% and CI by 4.35l (50%) from the baseline (P < 0.001) whereas TPR decreased by 0.213 units (-21%; P < 0.001). CV variables returned to baseline as the task ended. Effects of MAT-1 -2 and -3 on the CV variables were similar (P > 0.05). CONCLUSION: Repeated exposure to mental stress results in identical CV reactivity response, effects are attributable to adrenaline gush and that quick adaptation to stressor does not occur; recovery may take place with CV parameters returning to the baseline as soon as stress was over.

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