For many years clinicians have suspected that hypertrophied ventricles have an inadequate coronary circulation. Recent studies have confirmed early observations that flow per gram in hypertrophied ventricles is normal at rest. However, coronary vascular resistance is greatly increased when hypertension is the cause of left ventricular hypertrophy. Studies that have employed labeled microspheres to assess regional myocardial perfusion have shown that the transmural distribution of myocardial perfusion is often abnormal in dogs with left ventricular hypertrophy. In addition, studies of cardiac hypertrophy in many animal models have shown that maximal coronary vasodilatation is limited substantially. Furthermore, when hypertrophied hearts are subjected to a physiologic stress that induces coronary vasodilatation, endocardial underperfusion occurs frequently. Thus, studies in animals suggest that cardiac hypertrophy adversely affects the coronary circulation. The availability of new techniques for estimating phasic and transmural coronary blood flow in man should make it possible to extend these studies to patients with cardiac hypertrophy.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine