The Effect of Hypocapnia on Arterial Blood Pressure
In man, hypocapnia induced by hyperventilation causes a drop in arterial pressure. The calculated peripheral resistance is decreased, indicating a net vasodilatation. The forearm blood flow is markedly increased, and the vascular resistance of the forearm is much reduced. Persons with impaired function of the sympathetic nervous system continue to show these effects. The increase in forearm flow is not prevented by brachial block. These results suggest that hypocapnia acts directly on blood vessels to produce a net over-all vasodilatation and fall in blood pressure, and that this effect is not mediated through the nervous system, as usually supposed.
- © 1954 American Heart Association, Inc.