Patterns of cardiovascular responses to stress as a function of race and parental hypertension in men.
This study investigated cardiovascular responses to two stressors known to elicit either beta-adrenergic (mental arithmetic) or alpha-adrenergic (forehead cold pressor) reactivity in Black and White men. Participants in each group were selected for presence or absence of parental hypertension. Based on previous research, Blacks were expected to show smaller cardiovascular responses to the beta-adrenergic mental arithmetic task and greater responses to the alpha-adrenergic cold pressor relative to the Whites. Systolic blood pressure (SBP), diastolic blood pressure (DBP), heart rate, forearm blood flow, and forearm vascular resistance were assessed during a resting baseline, a prestress period, and during and after each experimental procedure. Unlike previous findings, no significant racial differences in cardiovascular responses were found during either task. However, Black participants had significantly higher SBP and DBP levels throughout the cold pressor periods. Parental history did not significantly influence cardiovascular responses in either group. The results are discussed in relation to previous research on racial differences in stress reactivity and their implications for future research.
Anderson, NB; Lane, JD; Taguchi, F; Williams, RB
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