Fractal correlation property of heart rate variability in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease

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Carvalho, Tatiana D. [UNESP]
Pastre, Carlos Marcelo [UNESP]
de Godoy, Moacir Fernandes
Fereira, Celso
Pitta, Fabio O. [UNESP]
de Abreu, Luiz Carlos
Cipulo Ramos, Ercy Mara [UNESP]
Valenti, Vitor E.
Marques Vanderlei, Luiz Carlos [UNESP]

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Dove Medical Press Ltd


Background: It was reported that autonomic nervous system function is altered in subjects with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). We evaluated short-and long-term fractal exponents of heart rate variability (HRV) in COPD subjects.Patients and methods: We analyzed data from 30 volunteers, who were divided into two groups according to spirometric values: COPD (n = 15) and control (n = 15). For analysis of HRV indices, HRV was recorded beat by beat with the volunteers in the supine position for 30 minutes. We analyzed the linear indices in the time (SDNN [standard deviation of normal to normal] and RMSSD [root-mean square of differences]) and frequency domains (low frequency [LF], high frequency [HF], and LF/HF), and the short-and long-term fractal exponents were obtained by detrended fluctuation analysis. We considered P < 0.05 to be a significant difference.Results: COPD patients presented reduced levels of all linear exponents and decreased short-term fractal exponent (alpha-1: 0.899 +/- 0.18 versus 1.025 +/- 0.09, P = 0.026). There was no significant difference between COPD and control groups in alpha-2 and alpha-1/alpha-2 ratio.Conclusion: COPD subjects present reduced short-term fractal correlation properties of HRV, which indicates that this index can be used for risk stratification, assessment of systemic disease manifestations, and therapeutic procedures to monitor those patients.



pulmonary disease, chronic obstructive, heart rate, nervous system, cardiology

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International Journal of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease. Albany: Dove Medical Press Ltd, v. 6, p. 23-28, 2011.