Blood pressure response to exercise in normotensive and hypertensive young men

E. Rosenberg, P. Froom, B. S. Lewis, M. Gross, J. Ribak, I. Shochat, J. Benbassat

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We attempted to determine the optimal cut-off value of blood pressure defining a hypertensive response to exercise testing in 90 asymptomatic Israeli candidates for flight training with casual resting blood pressure of 140/90 mm Hg or more, and 72 age-matched normotensive controls tested in the Israel Air Force Aeromedical Center. Exercise testing (Bruce protocol) was performed using a calibrated Quinton Treadmill and a Hewlett Packard 151711-A three-channel ECG recording system. Recordings were made at 3-min intervals. At 3 min of exercise 12/87 (14%) of the hypertensive subjects had a SBP of ≥210, compared to only 1/71 (1%) of the control group (relative risk 14). At 12 min of exercise 27/51 (53%) of the hypertensives and 9/55 (16%) of the controls had similar elevations of SBP (relative risk 3.3). At 6 min of exercise 11/87 (13%) of hypertensives had SBP ≥220, whereas none of the normal controls had SBPs elevated to that degree. We concluded that an increase in SBP to 210 mm Hg or more after 3 min or to 220 mm Hg after 6 min of exercise testing by the Bruce protocol best separates the hypertensive group from the control group. This occurs at the expense of sensitivity. Only appropriate longitudinal studies can compare the degree to which various definitions of the hypertensive response to exercise will predict future hypertension.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)433-435
Number of pages3
JournalAviation Space and Environmental Medicine
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1990
Externally publishedYes


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