Author + information
- Received November 19, 1994
- Revision received February 28, 1995
- Accepted March 8, 1995
- Published online July 1, 1995.
- Michael Jeserich, MDa,*,
- Thomas Münzel, MDa,1,
- Linda Pape, MDa,*,
- Christof Fischer, MDa,
- Helmut Drexler, MDa and
- Hanjörg Just, MD, FRCPa
- ↵*Address for correspondence: Dr. Michael Jeserich, Medizinische Klinik III. Universitätsklinik Freiburg, Hugstetterstrasse 55, 79106 Freiburg. Germany.
Objectives. We examined whether reflex neurohormonal constrictor forces attenuate the vasodilator action of nitroglycerin on large peripheral conductance vessels.
Background. Continuous nitroglycerin therapy is associated with the development of early tolerance with respect to its hemodynamic effects. It remains to be demonstrated whether vascular tolerance of large conductance vessels is an important contributory factor.
Methods. Radial artery diameter and forearm blood flow velocity were measured before and 24 and 48 h after continuous intravenous nitroglycerin infusion (0.5 μg/kg body weight per min) in 10 patients with coronary artery disease (mean age ± SEM 59 ± 4 years) by using a high resolution ultrasound device. Blood flow (ml/min) was calculated from mean blood flow velocity and cross-sectional area.
Results. Increasing concentrations of nitroglycerin led to a dose-dependent increase in radial artery diameter (maximal +24 ± 2%) and heart rate. Forearm vascular resistance and forearm blood flow were unchanged. After 24 and 48 h of treatment, additional nitroglycerin did not further increase radial artery diameter, indicating that the nitroglycerin-induced dilation of the radial artery was maintained and was still maximal. In addition, radial artery diameter measured before and after 48 h of nitroglycerin infusion and after withdrawal of nitroglycerin in five additional patients showed that, after withdrawal, arterial diameter returned to baseline values within 35 min. Plasma renin activity and serum aldosterone and vasopressin levels increased significantly at 24 and 48 h, accompanied by a decrease in hematocrit.
Conclusions. Continuous intravenous administration of nitroglycerin exerts a sustained vasodilator effect for 48 h in large conductance vessels. Neurohormonal activation and compensatory intravascular volume expansion do not attenuate the vasodilator effects of nitroglycerin on peripheral conductance vessels during the 1st 48 h of treatment.
- Received November 19, 1994.
- Revision received February 28, 1995.
- Accepted March 8, 1995.
- The American College of Cardiology