Pediatric cardio-autonomic response to variable effort after severe traumatic brain injury.

Brain injury : [BI]

PubMedID: 27305423

Katz-Leurer M, Rotem H, Shofer M, Meyer S. Pediatric cardio-autonomic response to variable effort after severe traumatic brain injury. Brain Inj. 2016;1-4.
AIM
To assess heart rate (HR) and heart rate variability (HRV) at rest, during exercise and during the recovery phase post-exercise in children at the chronic phase post-severe TBI as compared to age-matched typically-developed (TD) controls.

SETTING
Out-patient clinic.

PARTICIPANTS
Ten children (two girls, eight boys), 3-5 years post-severe TBI, aged 7-11 years with residual deficits and 20 TD children matched for age.

INTERVENTIONS
HR and HRV were determined at rest, during step test for 3 minutes, during walking on a treadmill for 6 minutes and during the recovery periods post-exercise sessions.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES
HR and HRV parameters.

RESULTS
Children post-TBI demonstrated higher mean HR values and lower HRV at rest compared to controls (p < 0.05). During exercise a significant increase in HR and significant decrease in HRV was noted in both groups. A significant interaction was noted (p < 0.01); HR and HRV parameters in response to exercise and to exercise cessation were significantly lower among children post-TBI as compared to the controls.

CONCLUSIONS
The findings of this study show that, in children, post-severe TBI at the chronic phase, the cardiac autonomic system is less efficient at rest and less adaptive to exercise and activity as compared to TD children.