Arterial dilation and reduced wave reflection. Benefit of dilevalol in hypertension

R. Kelly, J. Daley, A. Avolio, M. O'Rourke

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169 Citations (Scopus)


We compared dilevalol (an isomer of labetalol), 200-400 mg daily, against atenolol, 50-100 mg daily, in a double-blind, crossover, placebo-controlled trial with respect to effects on arterial distensibility (measured as pulse wave velocity [PWV]) and wave reflection (assessed from carotid pressure wave contour). Twelve patients of mean age 58 years (range 44-73 years) with essential hypertension (supine diastolic blood pressure 95-114 mm Hg) took active therapy for 12 weeks, separated by a 2-4-week placebo period. Carotid pressure waveforms were recorded noninvasively by applanation tonometry with a Millar micromanometer-tipped probe. PWV was measured between carotid and femoral arteries (aortic PWV), carotid and radial arteries (arm PWV), and femoral and pedal arteries (leg PWV). Early wave reflection was calculated from the ratio of the height of the peak of the carotid wave above its shoulder to the pulse pressure and was expressed as an augmentation index. Both drugs were equally effective in reducing brachial sphygmomanometric pressure and PWV in all three regions (active vs. placebo, p < 0.001), but there was no significance between the two active therapies. However, the augmentation index (averaged during the treatment period) was significantly lower with dilevalol (19%) than with atenolol (28%, p < 0.01), corresponding to a greater decrease of 5-8 mm Hg in carotid systolic pressure compared with the brachial artery. Although both drugs were equally effective in reducing arterial distensibility, the vasodilating action of dilevalol gave benefit in reducing wave reflection, presumably through its vasodilatory effect on peripheral conduit arteries.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)14-21
Number of pages8
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1989
Externally publishedYes


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