A new method of measuring propagation coefficients and characteristic impedance in blood vessels.
True propagation coefficients of pulse wave harmonics in an artery can be determined in vivo by measuring pulsatile blood pressure and flow at each of two points along the length of the vessel. These coefficients, which are complex numbers that describe the attenuation and the phase shift imposed on a traveling wave, are independent of the reflected waves in the circulation and thus provide information about the viscoelastic state and other properties of an artery. The equations involved are implicit in standard transmission-line theory, but they have not previously been applied in this particular way to blood vessels. The femoral artery, exposed in situ, was studied in 11 anesthetized dogs. At 1.5 Hz, true attenuation constants averaged 0.0151 nepers/cm, and true phase constants averaged 0.0155 radians/cm. As frequency increased, the apparent phase velocity of flow, in contrast, was relatively low at the first harmonic and rose as frequency increased. True phase velocities lay between the apparent pressure and flow values. Characteristic impedance at 1.5 Hz had an average modulus of 1.76 times 10-4 dyne sec/cm5 and a phase of minus 0.31 radians. The modulus diminished as frequency increased, and the phase became less negative. These results show that true phase constants and characteristic impedances determined by this method are consistent with data reported by others and provide information not previously available about flow wave propagation.
- Copyright © 1975 by American Heart Association