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Assessment of Slow-breathing Relaxation Technique in Acute Stressful Tasks Using a Multipurpose Non-invasive Beat-by-Beat Cardiovascular Monitoring System

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4 Author(s)
Nogawa, M. ; Kanazawa Univ., Kanazawa ; Yamakoshi, T. ; Ikarashi, A. ; Tanaka, S.

Recently, several studies revealed that daily slow-breathing exercise lowered blood pressure and increased baroreflex sensitivity. With this interesting finding, we have been contemplating to design a compact breath-controllable device for relaxation to stress reaction during daily living for home as well as ambulatory use, as a final goal, towards reduction of cognitive hemodynamic disorders, hypertension, and acute stress-induced hemodynamic disorders. The present study thereby describes, as a first step, to design a prototype system combining a compact multipurpose non-invasive beat-by-beat cardiovascular monitor developed previously with a wrist-type vibrator to make a respiration rhythm, and to assess an effect of slow-breathing relaxation on the cardiovascular hemodynamics in response to acute stressful conditions. The cardiovascular hemodynamic monitor can measure beat-by-beat systolic (SBP), mean (MBP) and diastolic (DBP) pressure in a finger based on the volume-compensation method, cardiac output (CO) by the electrical admittance method and the other hemodynamic-related parameters (e.g., total peripheral resistance (TPR=MBP/CO), heart rate (HR), respiratory rate, pulse wave velocity, etc.). The wrist-type vibrator can give various breathing rhythms quietly to a subject using a small vibration motor. The stressful tasks loaded to healthy volunteers (3 males, 23-34 yrs.) in the experiments were cold pressor and arithmetic ones as a representative of daily passive and active coping tasks, respectively, under conditions with (respiratory rate of 6 1/min) and without breath control. The results showed that the slow-breathing technique could have a significant effect on improvement of the hemodynamic changes following the acute stressful tasks, especially in the passive coping task. The prototype system combining the cardiovascular monitor with the breath controller appears to be useful and helpful in terms of self-monitoring of hemodynamic changes as well as se- f-care for the improvement of the cardiovascular function during daily living.

Published in:

Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society, 2007. EMBS 2007. 29th Annual International Conference of the IEEE

Date of Conference:

22-26 Aug. 2007