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28. Estimation of central aortic pressure waveform by mathematical transformation

Title: Estimation of central aortic pressure waveform by mathematical transformation of radial tonometry pressure. Validation of generalized transfer function.

Author Information

Chen CH1, Nevo E, Fetics B, Pak PH, Yin FC, Maughan WL, Kass DA.



Central aortic pressures and waveform convey important information about cardiovascular status, but direct measurements are invasive. Peripheral pressures can be measured noninvasively, and although they often differ substantially from central pressures, they may be mathematically transformed to approximate the latter. We tested this approach, examining intersubject and intrasubject variability and the validity of using a single averaged transformation, which would enhance its applicability.


Invasive central aortic pressure by micromanometer and radial pressure by automated tonometry were measured in 20 patients at steady state and during hemodynamic transients (Valsalva maneuver, abdominal compression, nitroglycerin, or vena caval obstruction). For each patient, transfer functions (TFs) between aortic and radial pressures were calculated by parametric model and results averaged to yield individual TFs. A generalized TF was the average of individual functions. TFs varied among patients, with coefficients of variation for peak amplitude and frequency at peak amplitude of 24.9% and 16.9%, respectively. Intrapatient TF variance with altered loading (> 20% variation in peak amplitude) was observed in 28.5% of patients. Despite this, the generalized TF estimated central arterial pressures to < or = 0.2 +/- 3.8 mm Hg error, arterial compliance to 6 +/- 7% accuracy, and augmentation index to within -7% points (30 +/- 45% accuracy). Individual TFs were only marginally superior to the generalized TF for reconstructing central pressures.


Central aortic pressures can be accurately estimated from radial tonometry with the use of a generalized TF. The reconstructed waveform can provide arterial compliance estimates but may underestimate the augmentation index because the latter requires greater fidelity reproduction of the wave contour.

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