The purpose of this study was to determine the relationship between free-living daily physical activity and peripheral circulation under resting, reactive hyperemia, and maximal exercise conditions in peripheral arterial occlusive disease (PAOD) patients with intermittent claudication. Sixty-one PAOD patients (age=70 ±6 years, ankle/brachial index [ABI] =0.57 ± 0.24) were recruited from the Vascular Clinic at the Baltimore Veterans Affairs Medical Center and from radio and newspaper advertisements. Free-living daily physical activity was measured as the energy expenditure of physical activity (EEPA), determined from doubly labeled water and indirect calorimetry. Patients also were characterized on ankle/brachial index, calf blood flow, calf transcutaneous oxygen tension (TcPo2), and calf transcutaneous heating power (TcHP). ABI and calf blood flow served as markers of the macrocirculation of the lower extremity, while TcPo2 and TcHP served as markers of the microcirculation. The claudication patients were sedentary, reflected by a mean EEPA value of 486 ± 274 kcal/day. EEPA was related to calf TcHP at rest (282 ± 24 mW; r=-0.413, p=0.002), after postocclusion reactive hyperemia (275 ± 22 mW; r=-0.381, p=0.004), and after maximal exercise (276 ± 20 mW; r=-0.461, p<0.001). ABI, calf blood flow, and calf TcPo2 were not related to EEPA under any condition. In conclusion, higher levels of free-living daily physical activity were associated with better microcirculation of the calf musculature in older PAOD patients with intermittent claudication.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine