Influence of heart rate on left ventricular performance in conscious dogs.
The effects of atrial pacing on the left ventricular end-systolic pressure-volume relation, a relatively load-insensitive index of left ventricular performance, were studied in 8 chronically instrumented, conscious dogs. Six of the dogs were studied while autonomically intact, and 2 were studied after autonomic blockade with 2 mg/kg i.v. propranolol and 0.2 mg/kg i.v. atropine. Left ventricular pressure was measured with a micromanometer and left ventricular volume was determined from 3 ultrasonic orthogonal dimensions. Pressure was varied by caval occlusions at control heart rate and after atrial pacing at 100, 120, 140, 160, 180, and 200 bpm. The end-systolic pressure-volume relation was linear in every case (r = 0.97 +/- 0.03, SD). In the autonomically intact dogs, Emax, the slope of the end-systolic pressure-volume relation, was directly and monotonically related to heart rate in every dog, increasing to 238 +/- 99% of control at peak pacing rate (p less than 0.05). V0, the zero pressure intercept of the relation was also directly related to heart rate in every dog and increased 8.6 +/- 5.5 ml from control to peak pacing rate (p less than 0.05). Autonomic blockade did not attenuate these effects. This rightward shift of the end-systolic pressure-volume relation results in a reduced stroke volume from any end-diastolic volume, modulating the hemodynamic benefits of enhanced contractility. T, the time constant of isovolumic pressure fall during ventricular relaxation, was determined from beats with matched end-systolic pressures. T was related to heart rate, falling by 20 +/- 10.3% over the range of rates studied in the autonomically intact dogs and by 23.1 +/- 6.2% in the autonomically blocked dogs. Thus, the ventricle relaxes more rapidly at higher heart rates. We conclude that the frequency of contraction is concluded as an important determinant of overall pump function throughout the cardiac cycle in conscious dogs.
- Copyright © 1987 by American Heart Association