Inhibition of coronary blood flow by a vascular waterfall mechanism.
The mechanism whereby systole inhibits coronary blood flow was examined. A branch of the left coronary artery was maximally dilated with an adenosine infusion, and the pressure-flow relationship was obtained for beating and arrested states. The pressure-flow curve for the arrested state was shifted toward higher pressures and in the range of pressures above peak ventricular pressure was linear and parallel to that for the arrested state. Below this range the curve for the beating state converged toward that for the arrested state and was convex to the pressure axis. These results were compared with a model of the coronary vasculature that consisted of numerous parallel channels, each responding to local intramyocardial pressure by forming vascular waterfalls. When intramyocardial pressure in the model was assigned values from zero at the epicardium to peak ventricular pressure at the endocardium, pressure-flow curves similar to the experimental ones resulted. Thus, we conclude that systole inhibits coronary perfusion by the formation of vascular waterfalls and that the intramyocardial pressures responsible for this inhibition do not significantly exceed peak ventricular pressure.
- Copyright © 1975 by American Heart Association