Indan Journal of Medical Research Indan Journal of Medical Research Indan Journal of Medical Research Indan Journal of Medical Research
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Year : 2017  |  Volume : 145  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 503-512

Acute effects on cardiovascular oscillations during controlled slow yogic breathing

Department of Physiology, All Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, India

Correspondence Address:
Kishore Kumar Deepak
Deepak, Room No. 2008, Department of Physiology, Teaching Block, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi 110 029
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ijmr.IJMR_830_15

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Background & objectives: Breathing exercises are believed to modulate the cardiovascular oscillations in the body. To assess the validity of the assumption and understand the underlying mechanism, the key autonomic regulatory parameters such as heart rate variability (HRV), blood pressure variability (BPV) and baroreflex sensitivity (BRS) were recorded during controlled slow yogic breathing. Alternate nostril breathing (ANB) was selected as the yogic manoeuvre. Methods: Twelve healthy volunteers (age 30±3.8 yr) participated in the study. ANB was performed at a breathing frequency of 5 breaths per minute (bpm). In each participant, the electrocardiogram, respiratory movements, beat-to-beat BP and end-tidal carbon dioxide were recorded for five minutes each: before, during and after ANB. The records were analyzed for HRV, BPV and BRS. Results: During ANB, HRV analysis showed significant increase in the standard deviation of all NN intervals, low-frequency (LF) component, LF/HF (low frequency/high frequency) ratio and significant decrease in the HF component. BPV analysis showed a significant increase in total power in systolic BPV (SBPV), diastolic BPV (DBPV) and mean BPV. BRS analysis showed a significant increase in the total number of sequences in SBPV and DBPV and significant augmentation of α-LF and reduction in α-HF. The power spectrum showed a dominant peak in HRV at 0.08 Hz (LF component) similar to the respiratory frequency. The acute short-term change in circulatory control system declined immediately after the cessation of slow yogic breathing (ANB) and remained elevated in post-ANB stage as compared to the pre-ANB. Interpretation & conclusions: Significant increase in cardiovascular oscillations and baroreflex recruitments during-ANB suggested a dynamic interaction between respiratory and cardiovascular system. Enhanced phasic relationship with some delay indicated the complexity of the system. It indicated that respiratory and cardiovascular oscillations were coupled through multiple regulatory mechanisms, such as mechanical coupling, baroreflex and central cardiovascular control.

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