Effect of cardiac pacing on forearm vascular responses and nitric oxide function

Daniel Green, C. Cheetham, C. Henderson, R. Weerasooriya, G. O'Driscoll

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18 Citations (Scopus)


We examined the hypothesis that changes in heart rate at rest influence bioactivity of nitric oxide (NO) in humans by examining forearm blood flow responses during cardiac pacing in six subjects. Peak forearm and mean forearm blood flows across the cardiac cycle were continuously recorded at baseline and during pacing, with the use of high-resolution brachial artery ultrasound and Doppler flow velocity measurement. The brachial artery was cannulated to allow continuous infusion of saline or NG-monomethyl-L-arginine (L-NMMA). As heart rate increased, no changes in pulse pressure and mean or peak blood flow were evident. L-NMMA had no effect on brachial artery diameter, velocity, or flows compared with saline infusion. These results contrast with our recent findings that exercise involving the lower body, associated with increases in heart rate and pulse pressure, also increased forearm blood flow, the latter response being diminished by L-NMMA. These data suggest that changes in blood pressure, rather than pulse frequency, may be the stimulus for shear stress-mediated NO release in vivo.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)H1354-H1360
JournalAmerican Journal of Phsyiology - Heart and Circulatory Physiology
Issue number4 52-4
Publication statusPublished - 2002


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