Nonuniform course of left ventricular pressure fall and its regulation by load and contractile state.
BACKGROUND Effects of systolic left ventricular pressure (LVP) on rates of pressure fall remain incompletely understood. This study analyzed phase-plane dP/dt versus LVP plots to differentiate between accelerating and decelerating effects and to investigate the variability in reported load effects on rates of LVP fall.
METHODS AND RESULTS Abrupt aortic occlusions were performed by inflating a balloon positioned in the ascending aorta of anesthetized open-chest dogs (n = 17). The occlusions resulted in clamp elevations of systolic LVP. In protocol A, the elevations of systolic LVP induced by total aortic occlusions were timed at early, mid, and late ejection. The magnitude of the elevations was 36.0 +/- 3.6 mm Hg for early, 11.6 +/- 0.6 mm Hg for mid, and negligible for late occlusions. The course of LVP fall appeared to be more complex than previously appreciated. Pressure fall might be subdivided in an initial accelerative phase, an intermediate decelerative phase, and a terminal decelerative phase. The initial phase accelerated with mid and late occlusions. The intermediate phase slowed down with early and to a lesser extent with mid occlusions. The terminal phase was never affected by aortic clamp occlusions. In protocol B, early elevations of systolic LVP were obtained with multiple graded aortic occlusions. The effects of matched LVP elevations of 12 mm Hg on rate of LVP fall were evaluated with the time constant of LVP fall (tau) and showed an interanimal variability ranging from acceleration and a 20% decrease in tau to deceleration and a 35% increase in tau. Changes in tau were moderately correlated with commonly used indexes of contractility (peak +dP/dt, r = -.78; regional fractional shortening, r = -.63). These changes in tau showed a close correlation with the systolic LVP of the test beat, expressed as a percentage of the peak isovolumetric LVP, obtained with total aortic occlusion (r = .984). This suggested that the contraction-relaxation coupling should be analyzed in terms of peak force development rather than contraction velocity or ejection fraction.
CONCLUSIONS LVP fall could be subdivided into an initial accelerative phase, an intermediate decelerative phase, and a terminal decelerative phase. Effects of elevations in systolic LVP on rate of LVP fall could be predicted by knowing peak isovolumetric LVP. Nonuniformity of LVP fall and adequate interpretation of load effects should be taken into account when clinical situations or pharmacological interventions are considered. In congestive heart failure, slow LVP fall could mainly reflect working conditions close to isovolumetric rather than relaxation disturbances.
- Copyright © 1994 by American Heart Association