Effects of reperfusion on ischemic right ventricular dysfunction. Disparate mechanisms of benefit related to duration of ischemia.
BACKGROUND Right ventricular free wall (RVFW) ischemia impairs global RV performance and may result in acute hemodynamic compromise. However, RV function and hemodynamic performance typically improve spontaneously over time. This study was designed to determine whether reperfusion facilitates recovery of function in the ischemic right ventricle.
METHODS AND RESULTS Closed chest dogs underwent right coronary balloon occlusion for 1 hour (n = 9), 4 hours (n = 6), or 8 hours (n = 7). In all animals, occlusion depressed RVFW function and global RV performance. After 1 hour of ischemia, reperfusion led to immediate improvement in RVFW function and consequently global RV performance, with complete recovery over 4 weeks and scar in < 1% of total RVFW area. Reperfusion after 4- and 8-hour occlusions resulted in acute improvement in global RV performance but to a lesser extent and by different mechanisms, since RVFW contraction remained severely impaired. This disproportionate recovery of global RV function was attributable to diminished RVFW dyskinesis associated with reperfusion-induced increments in RVFW diastolic thickness (characterized histopathologically in 6 additional animals subjected to 4-hour occlusions but killed 1 hour after reperfusion by interstitial edema, contraction band necrosis, and hemorrhage). Although later reperfusion was associated with a slower pace and lesser extent of recovery, RVFW contraction improved markedly over time. At 4 weeks, there was trivial RVFW scar in 4-hour animals (2% of total RVFW area), and, although fibrosis was significantly greater in 8-hour animals (7% of RVFW area), infarction was minimal relative to the extent of jeopardized myocardium.
CONCLUSIONS The responses of ischemic RV myocardium to reperfusion are complex, with disparate effects according to the duration of preceding ischemia. Early reperfusion results in prompt improvement in and subsequent complete recovery of RVFW contraction and global RV performance, with trivial or no RVFW scar. Late reperfusion leads to little acute recovery of RVFW function, but global performance improves owing to diminished RVFW dyskinesis associated with reperfusion-induced increments in RVFW diastolic thickness. Nevertheless, RVFW function improves over time, with minimal evidence of infarction. Therefore, reperfusion facilitates recovery of RV function and minimizes the extent of infarction even after prolonged ischemia.
- Copyright © 1994 by American Heart Association