Mechanical somatosensory stimulation decreases blood pressure in patients with Parkinson's disease

Antonio R. Zamunér, Dana Shiffer, Franca Barbic, Maura Minonzio, Carolina P. Andrade, Manuel Corato, Stefania Lalli, Franca Dipaola, Beatrice Cairo, Alberto Albanese, Alberto Porta, Raffaello Furlan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective:The current study aimed to assess the effects of five cycles of automated mechanical somatosensory stimulation (AMSS) of the fore-feet on blood pressure (BP) and cardiovascular autonomic control in Parkinson's Disease patients.Methods:Out of 23 patients, 16 underwent an AMSS session every 72 h, for a total of five sessions per patient. Electrocardiogram, noninvasive beat-to-beat blood pressure and respiratory activity were recorded for 20 min in supine position at baseline and after the AMSS sessions. Main outcomes were the changes in SBP and DBP, in the spectral indices of cardiac sympathetic (LFRRn.u.) and vagal (HFRR) modulatory activities, cardiac sympathovagal relationship (LF/HF), vascular sympathetic modulation (LFSAP) and arterial baroreflex sensitivity (sequence technique). Symbolic analysis of heart rate variability provided additional indices of cardiac sympathetic (0V%) and vagal (2UV%) modulation to the sinoatrial node.Results:After five AMSS trials a reduction in SBP (baseline: 131.2 ± 15.5 mmHg; post-AMSS: 122.4 ± 16.2 mmHg; P = 0.0004) and DBP (baseline: 73.2 ± 6.1 mmHg; post-AMSS: 68.9 ± 6.2 mmHg; P = 0.008) was observed. Post-AMSS, spectral and symbolic indices of cardiovascular sympathetic control decreased and arterial baroreflex sensitivity increased (baseline: 5.7 ± 1.3 ms/mmHg; post-AMSS: 11.27 ± 2.7 ms/mmHg).Conclusion:AMSS sessions were effective in reducing BP, increasing baroreflex sensitivity and decreasing cardiovascular sympathetic modulation in Parkinson's disease patients. AMSS might be useful to control supine hypertension in Parkinson's disease.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1714-1721
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Hypertension
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - Aug 1 2019


  • cardiovascular autonomic control
  • heart rate and blood pressure variability
  • hypotension
  • Parkinson's disease
  • somatosensory stimulation
  • symbolic analysis of heart rate variability
  • sympathetic nervous system

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine
  • Physiology
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


Dive into the research topics of 'Mechanical somatosensory stimulation decreases blood pressure in patients with Parkinson's disease'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this