Left Ventricular Pressure-Volume Relations and Performance as Affected by Sudden Increases in Developed Pressure
Left ventricular performance in the isolated dog heart was observed in a preparation in which left ventricular pressure and volume could be monitored continuously while the ventricle contracted isobarically by compressing air into a large chamber. By suddenly reducing the orifice connecting the ventricle to the chamber a constant load was imposed on the ventricle, abruptly forcing it to develop pressure in systole. This pressure increased over the ensuing 3 minutes while both the load and the end-diastolic pressure remained constant, implying that the sudden development of pressure by the ventricle was attended by a positive inotropic effect, otherwise known as homeometric autoregulation. Further studies showed this positive inotropic effect to be a function of the magnitude of the abrupt increase in systolic pressure and the time course of the experiment. β-adrenergic receptor blockade with propranolol decreased but did not abolish this effect. Infusion of norepinephrine did not enhance it. Increases in ventricular compliance that accompanied loading could not fully account for it. Evidence is presented that this positive inotropic effect may in part be mediated through the release of intrinsic catecholamines when the ventricle is forced to increase its systolic pressure.
- isolated heart
- homeometric autoregulation
- ventricular compliance
- β-adrenergic receptor blockade
- Accepted December 27, 1967.
- © 1968 American Heart Association, Inc.