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Reduced heart rate variability predicts fatigue severity in individuals with CFS/ME. Escorihuela et al. 2019

Discussion in 'ME/CFS research' started by John Mac, Jan 6, 2020.

  1. John Mac

    John Mac Senior Member (Voting Rights)

    Hutan, Ravn, Michelle and 16 others like this.
  2. Barry

    Barry Senior Member (Voting Rights)

    Need to know of course if ME/CFS is unique in this regard, or whether other illnesses can provoke lower HRV with a similar signature.
    Ravn, Michelle, Milo and 9 others like this.
  3. strategist

    strategist Senior Member (Voting Rights)

    I'm guessing it's not unique. It's just a signal that something is wrong.
    Ravn, Yessica, alktipping and 9 others like this.
  4. ringding

    ringding Senior Member (Voting Rights)

    Bristol, UK
    I've been using resetting heart rate as an indicator for a few years. I bought a device which measures hrv early in December and there's a remarkable correlation with how crashed I am and hrv, so far at least.
    Ravn, Michelle, Yessica and 9 others like this.
  5. kilfinnan

    kilfinnan Established Member (Voting Rights)

    I posted on another thread about research and HR. I've had the kit to trace HR for 6 weeks now. Results are amazing. When at worst my HR is rock bottom. Nothing I do raises it much. When I'm feeling better HR can go sky high.

    Polar training load index is always sky high 36 - 48 hours after exertion.

    Strongly believe that proper small scale testing will prove real life results. Not solve ME but will go a long way in persuading GP like mine that something is wrong. Arguments with the BPS lobby would be completely unnecessary if more effort was made to prove studies like this were correct. I know my heart rate isn't functioning properly. Moaning at GP's like mine doesn't wash abnormal HR figures would.
    Ravn, alktipping, MeSci and 2 others like this.
  6. Arnie Pye

    Arnie Pye Senior Member (Voting Rights)

    Regarding heart rate variability...

    I discovered info on HRV for the first time very recently and was surprised about it. I had got completely the wrong end of the stick about it in relation to health. I had assumed that a healthy heart would maintain a healthy heart rate more of the time than an unhealthy heart. And I assumed a healthy heart rate was more or less permanently around 60 - 100.

    But now I realise I got that completely wrong and that a healthy heart, beating throughout an average day for a healthy person doing averagely energetic activity, could well have a heart rate that varies from quite slow to very fast at various times of day depending on demand. And that a healthy heart will get fast as activity demands it more easily than an unhealthy heart.

    I feel quite embarrassed about not having thought this subject through many years ago.
    Ravn, Michelle, alktipping and 5 others like this.
  7. JemPD

    JemPD Senior Member (Voting Rights)


    & what would help our case even more is a comparison with otherwise healthy but significantly deconditioned individuals (assuming there was a difference of course!)
    Barry, Ravn and alktipping like this.
  8. Mij

    Mij Senior Member (Voting Rights)

  9. Trish

    Trish Moderator Staff Member

    Heart rate variability is a specific measure that analyses details about the time interval between individual heart beats and how this varies while the person is resting.

    It's not about the variation in heart rate over the course of the day, or while doing different activities.

    You can't calculate HRV from something like a wrist worn Fitbit, because it averages the intervals over short periods as number of beats per minute, it doesn't record the interval between consecutive beats.

    Here's an article about it:
    An Overview of Heart Rate Variability Metrics and Norms
    Hutan, TiredSam, Mij and 16 others like this.
  10. Arnie Pye

    Arnie Pye Senior Member (Voting Rights)

    Thanks, Trish. I obviously still have much to learn on this subject. :)
    Ravn, alktipping, Trish and 1 other person like this.
  11. MeSci

    MeSci Senior Member (Voting Rights)

    Cornwall, UK
    Eight instances of 'hearth rate' instead of 'heart rate'!
  12. mariovitali

    mariovitali Senior Member (Voting Rights)

    Speaking for myself, It was very interesting to experience how HRV would rise by doing simple things such as slow breathing for a couple of minutes. I was able to track the pattern of the increased Sympathetic activity which would increase after every crash i had. Many crashes one after another would signify more issues of increases in sympathetic activity. I can now immediately tell when my sympathetic activity is increased :I feel Bloated, i cannot digest food and have loss of appetite.
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2020
    Ravn, alktipping, MeSci and 1 other person like this.
  13. Wonko

    Wonko Senior Member (Voting Rights)

    I have a hearth rate of zero, and have had for quite a while.

    It doesn't seem to negatively impact my health, but what do I know, I'm not an architect.
    TiredSam, Ravn, Michelle and 9 others like this.
  14. Kitty

    Kitty Senior Member (Voting Rights)

    :laugh::laugh::laugh: Me too! Used to have four of 'em, and they were very variable (at least in the amount of draught they created).
    Ravn, alktipping, Missense and 2 others like this.
  15. Cheshire

    Cheshire Moderator Staff Member

    Is this linked to the disease process, or could it be a consequence of being sedentary?
    Hutan, Ravn, Michelle and 3 others like this.
  16. Andy

    Andy Committee Member

    Hampshire, UK
    Quickly scanned the paper, Fukuda criteria and lots of mention of depression symptoms, which is concerning.
    cyclamen, Ravn, Michelle and 3 others like this.
  17. Trish

    Trish Moderator Staff Member

    I wonder whether there is research on HRV in patients with anxiety or depression.
    Ravn, Michelle, NelliePledge and 5 others like this.
  18. ME/CFS Skeptic

    ME/CFS Skeptic Senior Member (Voting Rights)

    Two examples:

    I haven't really looked into this, but from briefly scanning articles I suspect that HRV is just an indicator of ill health/fitness and that being sedentary and deconditioned will also result in reduced HRV.

    It would be more interesting if there was a specific pattern in the HRV. One bit in this paper that caught my intention was:
    But one would have to compare ME/CFS patients to other patient groups to find something like that.
    adambeyoncelowe, Barry, Ravn and 9 others like this.
  19. feeb

    feeb Senior Member (Voting Rights)

    London, UK
    Low HRV is an indicator of a lot of things. AFAICT it drops whenever you're under any kind of stress, including allergies or insomnia. It's not particularly surprising that an increase in physical symptoms in ME/CFS would correlate with a change in HRV. FWIW I found that my HRV increased during a particular crash last year, and it certainly wasn't correlated with an improvement in health.

    It's an interesting idea to see if there's anything specific to ME/CFS that can be detected, I suppose. But if they're only looking at "people who have stuff wrong with them" and "people who don't have stuff wrong with them", then I don't see what the measurement is going to usefully tell us.
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2020
  20. Londinium

    Londinium Senior Member (Voting Rights)

    At the risk of sounding like a BPS proponent here, "it's deconditioning!" seems to be the appropriate response. More symptoms = increase probability of sedentary lifestyle = lower HRV. I don't see anything here that indicates ME/CFS patients have any difference in HRV from somebody who walks an equally few number of steps per day.
    Keela Too, Cheshire, Ravn and 4 others like this.

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