Cold pressor stimulus temperature and resting masseter muscle haemodynamics in normal humans

Kenji Maekawa, Takuo Kuboki, G. T. Clark, Motoki Shinoda, Atsushi Yamashita

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)


Cold pressor stimulation reportedly increases sympathetic nerve activity in human skeletal muscles. This study examined the effect of cold pressor stimulation on the resting haemodynamics of the right masseter muscle in normal individuals, using near-infrared spectroscopy. Nine healthy non- smoking males with no history of chronic muscle pain or vascular headaches participated. Their right hand was immersed in a water bath (4, 10, 15°C) for exactly 1 min. Each trial lasted 7 min (1 min before, 1 min during, 5 min after stimulation) and a strictly random order was utilized for the three test temperatures and the mock trial. Masseter muscle haemoglobin concentration and oxygen saturation, as well as heart rate and blood pressure, were continuously recorded in each trial. After completing the four trials, each participant produced and sustained a 30-s maximum voluntary clench in the intercuspal position. Data across the four trials were baseline-corrected and then magnitude-normalized to the individual's highest absolute haemoglobin and oxygen signal during the 30-s maximal clenching effort. Haemoglobin and oxygen saturation increased progressively during cold pressor stimulation as the water temperature decreased (Hb, p < 0.0001; O2, p = 0.0327); very little effect was seen during the mock trial. Heart rate and blood pressure also increased progressively during the stimulation as the temperature decreased (heart rate, p = 0.0013; systolic blood pressure, p = 0.0042; diastolic blood pressure, p = 0.0156). These data suggest that cold pressor stimulation induces a strong increase in intramuscular blood volume which appears to be due to both a local vasodilative response and increased cardiac output.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)849-859
Number of pages11
JournalArchives of Oral Biology
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - Nov 1998


  • Cold pressor
  • Masseter muscle
  • Near infrared spectroscopy
  • Resting haemodynamics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology
  • General Dentistry
  • Cell Biology


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