Effect of intracoronary nitroglycerin administration on phasic pattern and transmural distribution of flow during coronary artery stenosis.
BACKGROUND Nitroglycerin is effective in relieving myocardial ischemia; however, intracoronary nitroglycerin often fails to relieve angina and has been reported to have deleterious effects on subendocardial blood flow. To understand the mechanisms involved, we evaluated the direct effect of nitroglycerin on coronary circulation of the ischemic hearts.
METHODS AND RESULTS We measured the phasic pattern of intramyocardial coronary arterial flow with an 80-channel, 20-MHz pulsed Doppler ultrasound flowmeter under moderate to severe coronary artery stenosis (distal perfusion pressure approximately 45 mm Hg group 1, n = 6) and transmyocardial blood flow distribution using radioactive microspheres while maintaining coronary pressure at a low constant level (40 mm Hg, group 2, n = 6). In anesthetized open-chest dogs, the left main coronary artery was perfused directly from the right carotid or femoral artery. In this bypass circuit, pressure was controlled with an occluder or a reservoir was connected to the circuit. In group 1, the systolic and diastolic pressures distal to the stenosis decreased significantly after intracoronary administration of nitroglycerin at maximal coronary flow from 66.5 +/- 18.5 to 56.5 +/- 13.8 mm Hg (p less than 0.01) and from 36.6 +/- 14.4 to 27.5 +/- 8.9 mm Hg (p less than 0.01), respectively. The phasic pattern of the septal artery flow was predominantly diastolic and was characterized by systolic reverse flow even in the absence of stenosis. Coronary stenosis increased systolic reverse flow. Nitroglycerin increased diastolic forward flow (p less than 0.05) but augmented systolic reverse flow markedly (p less than 0.001). In group 2, nitroglycerin increased subepicardial flow (p less than 0.05) but failed to increase subendocardial flow. With the administration of nitroglycerin, the subendocardial-to-subepicardial flow ratio decreased significantly from 0.73 +/- 0.19 to 0.32 +/- 0.14 (p less than 0.01).
CONCLUSIONS The increased systolic reverse flow after intracoronary administration of nitroglycerin may be closely related to failure of subendocardial blood flow to increase with increase subepicardial flow.
- Copyright © 1992 by American Heart Association