Capturing postural blood pressure dynamics with near-infrared spectroscopy-measured cerebral oxygenation


Abstract Orthostatic hypotension (OH) is highly prevalent in older adults and associated with dizziness, falls, lower physical and cognitive function, cardiovascular disease, and mortality. OH is currently diagnosed in a clinical setting with single-time point cuff measurements. Continuous blood pressure (BP) devices can measure OH dynamics but cannot be used for daily life monitoring. Near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) has potential diagnostic value in measuring cerebral oxygenation continuously over a longer time period, but this needs further validation. This study aimed to compare NIRS-measured (cerebral) oxygenation with continuous BP and transcranial Doppler-measured cerebral blood velocity (CBv) during postural changes. This cross-sectional study included 41 participants between 20 and 88 years old. BP, CBv, and cerebral (long channels) and superficial (short channels) oxygenated hemoglobin (O 2 Hb) were measured continuously during various postural changes. Pearson correlations between BP, CBv, and O 2 Hb were calculated over curves and specific characteristics (maximum drop amplitude and recovery). BP and O 2 Hb only showed good curve-based correlations (0.58–0.75) in the initial 30 s after standing up. Early (30–40 s) and 1-min BP recovery associated significantly with O 2 Hb, but no consistent associations were found for maximum drop amplitude and late (60–175 s) recovery values. Associations between CBv and O 2 Hb were poor, but stronger for long-channel than short-channel measurements. BP associated well with NIRS-measured O 2 Hb in the first 30 s after postural change. Stronger associations for CBv with long-channel O 2 Hb suggest that long-channel NIRS specifically reflects cerebral blood flow during postural transitions, necessary to better understand the consequences of OH such as intolerance symptoms.