Lack of effect of nitrogen dioxide exposure on heart rate variability in patients with stable coronary heart disease and impaired left ventricular systolic function

A. Scaife, J. Barclay, Graham Hillis, J. Srinivasan, D.W. Macdonald, J.A.S. Ross, J.G. Ayres

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    7 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Objectives: Epidemiological studies of air pollution on cardiovascular health show associations of cardiac mortality and admissions with exposure to nitrogen dioxide (NO2) at low concentrations. These associations could be causal or NO2 could be acting as a surrogate measure for another air pollutant, most likely ultrafine particles. No studies of cardiac susceptibility to acute exposure to NO2 have been undertaken. Methods Randomised controlled exposures to NO2(400 ppb for 1 h) and air in subjects with coronary heart disease and impaired left ventricular systolic function not taking β adrenoceptor blocking drugs. Results: There were no significant changes in heart rate, blood pressure, leucocyte coping capacity or any heart rate variability measure following NO2 exposure compared with air. Conclusion: These findings suggest that NO2 does not affect heart rate variability at these concentrations (which are high for urban background levels) and in the absence of other pollutants. While a synergistic effect has not been ruled out, these data lend support to the idea that the epidemiological data associating cardiac outcomes with NO2 are more likely due to an associated pollutant rather than NO2 itself.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)587-591
    JournalOccupational and Environmental Medicine
    Volume69
    Issue number8
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2012

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