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Your Environment. Your Health.

Publication Detail

Title: Solar Activity Is Associated With Diastolic and Systolic Blood Pressure in Elderly Adults.

Authors: Wang, Veronica A; Zilli Vieira, Carolina L; Garshick, Eric; Schwartz, Joel D; Garshick, Michael S; Vokonas, Pantel; Koutrakis, Petros

Published In J Am Heart Assoc, (2021 11 02)

Abstract: Background Since solar activity and related geomagnetic disturbances modulate autonomic nervous system activity, we hypothesized that these events would be associated with blood pressure (BP). Methods and Results We studied 675 elderly men from the Normative Aging Study (Boston, MA) with 1949 BP measurements between 2000 and 2017. Mixed-effects regression models were used to investigate the association of average 1-day (ie, day of BP measurement) to 28-day interplanetary magnetic field intensity, sunspot number, and a dichotomized measure of global geomagnetic activity (Kp index) in 4-day increments with diastolic and systolic BP. We adjusted for meteorological conditions and other covariates associated with BP, and in additional models adjusted for ambient air pollutants (particulate matter with an aerodynamic diameter ≤2.5 µm, black carbon, and particle number) and ambient particle radioactivity. There were positive associations between interplanetary magnetic field, sunspot number, and Kp index and BP that were greatest with these exposures averaged over 16 through 28 days before BP measurement. An interquartile range increase of 16-day interplanetary magnetic field and sunspot number and higher Kp index were associated with a 2.5 (95% CI, 1.7‒3.2), 2.8 (95% CI, 2.1‒3.4), and 1.7 (95% CI, 0.8‒2.5) mm Hg increase, respectively, for diastolic BP as well as a 2.1 (95% CI, 0.7‒3.6), 2.7 (95% CI, 1.5‒4.0), and 0.4 (95% CI, -1.2 to 2.1) mm Hg increase, respectively, for systolic BP. Associations remained after adjustment for ambient air pollutants and ambient particle radioactivity. Conclusions Solar activity and solar-driven geomagnetic disturbances were positively associated with BP, suggesting that these natural phenomena influence BP in elderly men.

PubMed ID: 34713707 Exiting the NIEHS site

MeSH Terms: Aged; Air Pollutants/analysis; Air Pollution/analysis; Blood Pressure; Environmental Exposure; Humans; Male; Particulate Matter/analysis; Solar Activity*

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