Medicine and science in sports and exercise vol:28 issue:7 pages:794-800
The aim of this study was to investigate the prognostic value of cardiopulmonary fitness in hypertension. From 1972 to 1982 oxygen uptake and heart rate were recorded during an exercise test to exhaustion in 216 patients (143 men). Their outcome was ascertained in 1994. During 3,411 patient years of follow-up, 53 patients suffered at least one fatal or nonfatal cardiovascular event and 25 patients died. After adjustment for age, gender, and weight, the relative hazard rates (RHR; Cox regression) of peak oxygen uptake (l.min-1) amounted to 0.44 (P = 0.01) for the first occurring cardiovascular events and 0.35 (P = 0.05) for all-cause mortality. These RHR remained significant after additional adjustment for traditional cardiovascular risk factors (RHR = 0.45 and 0.28, respectively; P < 0.05). Heart rate at 50 W did not predict outcome after adjustment for age and gender (P = 0.94 and 0.14, respectively), nor after additional adjustment for heart rate at rest (P = 0.86 and 0.61, respectively). In conclusion, a lower peak oxygen uptake, but not a higher submaximal heart rate, is significantly and independently associated with a higher incidence of cardiovascular events and a higher total mortality in hypertensive patients.