Characterization of the vascular system using overnight wearable-based pulse arrival time and ambulatory blood pressure: A pilot study

Jingyuan Hong, Yali Zheng*, Shenghao Wu, Guoqiang Geng, Qing Liu, Carmen C.Y. Poon

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Pulse arrival time (PAT) has been broadly investigated for its potential for cuffless blood pressure (BP) estimation and ease of measurement by wearable devices. It is also of great significance to explore whether PAT conveys complementary information to BP for vascular health assessment. In this paper, the differences between the 24-h ambulatory BP and wearable-based PAT were compared among 12 young normotensives and 15 elderly hypertensives in terms of the mean and coefficients of variation (CoVs). The correlations of the nocturnal normalized PAT (n-PAT) and BP with two arterial stiffness-related parameters (i.e., the intrinsic elastic modulus E0 and the vascular modulation factor α) estimated by a proposed model-based method were also compared. The results showed that the inter-subject variances of the nocturnal average n-PAT were significantly different between the hypertensives and the normotensives (P < 0.001), and the intra-subject CoVs of the nocturnal n-PAT were also significantly different between the two groups (P < 0.05). However, these findings were not shown in the nocturnal BP. The correlation coefficient between the nocturnal average n-PAT and ln(E0) is larger than that with the nocturnal BP, i.e., 0.91 vs. 0.56. Furthermore, the result also revealed that all the hypertensives receiving antihypertensive medications did not achieve the optimal control of the nocturnal BP while presented diverse arterial stiffness indicated by the nocturnal average n-PAT and ln(E0). It is concluded that wearable-based PAT contains complementary information about the vascular system to the ambulatory BP, which may be useful for designing effective antihypertensive treatments.

Original languageEnglish
Article number104861
JournalComputers in Biology and Medicine
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2021


  • Arterial stiffness
  • Blood pressure
  • Digital health
  • Pulse arrival time
  • Wearable devices


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