The effect of repeated (3 to 10 second) and transient (15 to 75 second) abrupt coronary occlusion on the global and regional chamber stiffness was studied in nine patients undergoing angioplasty of a single proximal left anterior descending coronary artery stenosis. The left ventricular high fidelity pressure and volume relation was obtained before and after the procedure as well as during coronary occlusion, after 20 seconds (n = 9) and after 50 seconds (n = 5). During ischemia, there was an upward shift of the pressure-volume relation. The nonlinear simple elastic constant of chamber stiffness increased from 0.0273 +/- 0.017 before angioplasty (mean +/- SD) to 0.0621 +/- 0.026 after 20 seconds of occlusion (p less than 0.05) and 0.0605 +/- 0.015 after 50 seconds of occlusion (p less than 0.01). In five patients, the postangioplasty value remained higher than the control value, but at the group level the mean value (0.0529 +/- 0.037) was not statistically different. The regional stiffness was determined from the changes in the length of six segmental radii during diastole, from the lowest diastolic to the end-diastolic pressure. The regional constant of elastic stiffness was unaffected in the nonischemic zone. In the adjacent and ischemic zones, the regional stiffness was increased during occlusion (p less than 0.05). These regional abnormalities in diastolic function persisted at the time of postangioplasty measurements, 12 minutes after the end of the procedure. This suggests that recovery of normal diastolic function after repeated ischemic injuries is delayed after restoration of normal blood flow and systolic function.

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Journal of the American College of Cardiology
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam