The association between flow-mediated dilation and physical function in older men

Michael A. Welsch, Devon A. Dobrosielski, Arturo A. Arce-Esquivel, Robert H. Wood, Eric Ravussin, Christina Rowley, S. Michal Jazwinski

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


The probability that an individual is able to live independently decreases sharply below the threshold score of 57 units on the physical functional performance (PFP-10) test. Purpose: To examine the relation between brachial artery flow-mediated dilation (BAFMD) on individual and total scores on the PFP-10. We hypothesized that lower scores on the PFP-10 test would be associated with lower BAFMD. Methods: Sixty-four men (age, 84 ±11 yr) from the Louisiana Healthy Aging Study were studied. Participants were classified by their performance on the PFP-10 test (Class I, score <26; Class II, score between 26 and 57; and Class III, score > 57). BAFMD was assessed after 5 min of forearm occlusion, using high-resolution ultrasonography. Results: The average total score on the PFP-10 test and BAFMD were 42.9 ± 22 U and 2.76 ± 2.13%, respectively. The BAFMD was associated with total PFP-10 score (r = 0.45, P = 0.0001) and age (r = -0.36, P = 0.003). BAFMD was significantly different (P = 0.001) between the PFP-10 classes (Class I, 1.44% [95% CI, 0.49-2.39]; Class II, 2.67% [95% CI, 1.95-3.38]; and Class III, 4.01% [95% CI, 3.16-4.85]). Conclusions: This study reports significant relationships between BAFMD and individual and combined measures of physical function in elderly men. More specifically, when individuals were categorized based on their PFP-10 total score, those in the highest functional class, exhibited the highest BAFMD, compared to those in the middle class, who had greater vasoreactivity than those in the lowest functional class.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1237-1243
Number of pages7
JournalMedicine and Science in Sports and Exercise
Issue number7
StatePublished - 2008
Externally publishedYes


  • Aging
  • CS-PFP-10
  • Functional ability
  • Vascular function

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation


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