Background-Orthostatic hypotension is a prevalent condition in older adults and is associated with impaired physical performance and falls. The ability of older adults to compensate for rapid changes in systolic blood pressure (SBP; ie, SBP decline rate and SBP variability) may be important for physical performance. This study investigates the association of rapid SBP changes after standing up with physical performance. Methods and Results-—Consecutive patients who visited the Center of Geriatrics Amsterdam in 2014 and 2015 were included. The following SBP parameters were computed in 2 intervals (0–15 and 15–180 seconds) after standing up: steepness of steepest SBP decline; ratio of standing/supine SBP variability; and magnitude of largest SBP decline. Physical performance was assessed using the following measures: chair stand time, timed up and go time, walking speed, handgrip strength, and tandem stance performance. A total of 109 patients (45% men; age, mean, 81.7 years [standard deviation, 7.0 years]) were included. Steepness of steepest SBP decline (0–15 seconds) was associated with slower chair stand time (P<0.001), timed up and go time (P=0.022), and walking speed (P=0.024). Ratio of standing/supine SBP variability (0–15 seconds) was associated with slower chair stand time (P=0.005). Magnitude of largest SBP decline was not associated with physical performance. Conclusions-SBP parameters reflecting rapid SBP changes were more strongly associated with physical performance compared with SBP decline magnitude in geriatric outpatients. These results support the hypothesis of an inadequate cerebral autoregulation during rapid SBP changes and advocate the use of continuous blood pressure measurements.
- Geriatric assessment
- Orthostatic hypotension
- Physical performance
- Cerebral autoregulation
- Continuous blood pressure measurement