Splanchnic Nerve Block for Acute Heart Failure
The abdominal vascular compartment is the main storage of intravascular blood volume, and decreased abdominal vascular capacitance has been proposed as a major contributor to the complex pathophysiology of heart failure (HF) in animals and humans.1, 2 In HF, as a result of neurohormonal imbalance, the vascular capacitance ("storage-space") is decreased and acute sympathetic nerve activation can result in acute volume redistribution3 from the abdominal compartment to the thoracic compartment (heart and lungs), which increases intra-cardiac pressures and precipitates HF symptoms (Figure 1A). The sympathetic nervous system controls the splanchnic compartment via branches from the sympathetic thoracic ganglia (T6 through T11).4 We have identified the splanchnic nerves as a potential target for treating HF.
- Received April 1, 2018.
- Accepted May 14, 2018.