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International Journal of Hypertension
Volume 2011, Article ID 585703, 6 pages
Research Article

The Age-Dependent Contribution of Aortic Incident and Reflected Pressure Waves to Central Blood Pressure in African-Americans

Division of Cardiovascular Medicine, State University of New York Downstate Medical Center, Brooklyn, NY 11203-2098, USA

Received 2 March 2011; Revised 24 June 2011; Accepted 28 June 2011

Academic Editor: Samy I. McFarlane

Copyright © 2011 Haroon Kamran et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Aging is associated with increased central aortic systolic pressure (CSP) and pulse pressure which are predictive of cardiovascular events. Mechanisms implicated for higher central pressures include a higher forward incident pressure wave (P1), higher augmented pressure (AP), and shorter reflected wave round trip travel time (Tr). African-Americans (AA) have more frequent and deleterious blood pressure elevation. Using applanation tonometry, we studied the association of age and CSP with P1 and AP in 900 AA subjects. Data showed that in subjects ≤50 years old, CSP was mediated by AP but not P1 or Tr, whereas in those >50, CSP was mediated by both AP and P1 and to a lesser extent by Tr. Predictive models were significant ( 𝑅 2 = 0 . 9 7 ) for both age groups. In conclusion, wave reflection is the primary determinant of CSP in younger AA, while in older subjects, CSP is mediated by both the magnitude and timing of wave reflection as well as aortic impedance.