Correlation of cold pressor and flow-mediated brachial artery diameter responses with the presence of coronary artery disease

Mary C. Corretti, Gary D. Plotnick, Robert A. Vogel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

62 Scopus citations


Flow-mediated brachial and coronary artery vasoactivity are abnormal in patients with coronary artery disease (CAD) and cardiac risk factors. Cold pressor coronary artery vasoactivity is abnormal in patients with CAD, but brachial artery responses have not been studied. This study assesses whether cold pressor and flow-mediated brachial artery vasoactivity correlate independently with the presence of CAD. We studied 50 men (27 who were clinically normal, 23 with angiographically proven CAD) aged 23 to 59 years. With use of 7.5 MHz ultrasound, we measured brachial artery diameter and Doppler flow velocity at baseline, during contralateral ice water hand immersion (cold pressor), after 5 minutes of ipsilateral blood pressure cuff occlusion (flow-mediated), and after nitroglycerin administration. During cold pressor stimulation, mean brachial artery diameter increased 0.36 ± 2.93% in normal subjects but decreased 2.38 ± 3.32% in the CAD subjects (p = 0.006). Mean flow-mediated diameter increased 9.11 ± 6.01% and 6.58 ± 7.50% in normal and CAD subjects, respectively (p = NS). Responses to sublingual nitroglycerin were the same in the 2 groups. Multiple stepwise regression analysis revealed that cold pressor vasoactivity was found to correlate with smoking status (p = 0.0002) and the presence of CAD (p = 0.04). In the 32 nonsmokers undergoing assessment, only the presence of CAD correlated with cold pressor vasoactivity (p = 0.02). The associations of brachial artery vasoactivity with cardiac risk factors and CAD appear to be stimulus-dependent. Cold pressor vasoactivity correlates more closely with the presence of CAD than does flow-mediated vasoactivity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)783-787
Number of pages5
JournalThe American journal of cardiology
Issue number12
StatePublished - Apr 15 1995
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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