Jan H. Meijer, Eskeline Elbertse, Sanne Boesveldt, Henk W. Berendse and Rudolph M. Verdaasdonk
The Initial Systolic Time Interval (ISTI) has been defined as the time difference between the peak electrical and peak mechanical activity of the heart. ISTI is obtained from the electro-cardiogram and the impedance cardiogram. The response of ISTI while breathing at rest and to a deep breathing stimulus was studied in a group of patients suffering from Parkinson’s disease (PD) and a group of healthy control subjects. ISTI showed substantial variability during these manoeuvres. The tests showed that the variability of RR and ISTI was substantially different between PD patients and controls. It is hypothesized that in PD patients the sympathetic nervous system compensates for the loss of regulatory control function of the blood-pressure by the parasympathetic system. It is concluded that ISTI is a practical, additional and independent parameter that can be used to assist other tests in evaluating autonomic nervous control of the heart in PD patients.