Heart Rate Variability Moderates the Association Between Separation-Related Psychological Distress and Blood Pressure Reactivity Over Time
AffiliationUniv Arizona, Dept Psychol
Keywordsheart rate variability
respiratory sinus arrhythmia
blood pressure reactivity
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherSAGE PUBLICATIONS INC
CitationHeart Rate Variability Moderates the Association Between Separation-Related Psychological Distress and Blood Pressure Reactivity Over Time 2016, 27 (8):1123 Psychological Science
Rights© The Author(s) 2016.
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AbstractDivorce is a stressor associated with long-term health risk, though the mechanisms of this effect are poorly understood. Cardiovascular reactivity is one biological pathway implicated as a predictor of poor long-term health after divorce. A sample of recently separated and divorced adults (N = 138) was assessed over an average of 7.5 months to explore whether individual differences in heart rate variability—assessed by respiratory sinus arrhythmia—operate in combination with subjective reports of separation-related distress to predict prospective changes in cardiovascular reactivity, as indexed by blood pressure reactivity. Participants with low resting respiratory sinus arrhythmia at baseline showed no association between divorce-related distress and later blood pressure reactivity, whereas participants with high respiratory sinus arrhythmia showed a positive association. In addition, within-person variation in respiratory sinus arrhythmia and between-persons variation in separation-related distress interacted to predict blood pressure reactivity at each laboratory visit. Individual differences in heart rate variability and subjective distress operate together to predict cardiovascular reactivity and may explain some of the long-term health risk associated with divorce.
NoteOnlineFirst Version of Record - Jun 14, 2016. The version that was submitted may be placed on your personal or department website or with the university repository at any time; upon acceptance, you may do this with the final, accepted version of the article. You may not post the final published PDF.
VersionFinal accepted manuscript
SponsorsD. A. Sbarra’s work on this article was supported by a grant from the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (HD069498), and the overall project was funded by grants from the National Institute of Mental Health (MH074637) and the National Institute on Aging (AG028454 and AG036895).