Author + information
- Received December 13, 1991
- Revision received April 24, 1992
- Accepted May 6, 1992
- Published online November 15, 1992.
- Daniele Rovai, MD, FESC∗,
- Gianna Ghelardini, MS,
- Massimo Lombardi, MD,
- Maria Giovanna Trivella, MD,
- Edoardo Nevola, MD,
- Luigi Taddei,
- Claudio Michelassi,
- Alessandro Distante, MD, FESC,
- Anthony N. DeMaria, MD, FACC1 and
- Antonio L'Abbate, MD, FESC, FACC
- ↵∗Address for correspondence: Daniele Rovai, MD, FESC, CNR Clinical Physiology Institute, Via Paolo Savi, 8-56100 Pisa, Italy.
Objectives. The aim of the study was to evaluate the relation between measurements derived from myocardial contrast echocardiography and coronary blood flow.
Background. Contrast echocardiography has the potential for measuring blood flow.
Methods. In six open chest anesthetized dugs, the left circumflex coronary artery was cannulated and perfused with blood drawn from the left femoral artery. While adenosine was infused into the circuit, circumflex flow was generated by a calibrated roller pump to the point of abolishing coronary autoregulation. At each of 25 levels of coronary blood flow, paired bolus injections of sonicated iopamidol were performed proximal to a mixing chamber. The perfused area of the left circumflex coronary artery was labeled by radioactive microspheres injected into the perfusion line. Two-dimensional echocardiographic images of the left ventricular short axis were digitized off-line, and myocardial video-density was measured in the area perfused by the left circumflex coronary artery to generate time-intensity curves.
Results. The washout slope of curves showed a good correlation with coronary blood flow, ranging from 0.5 to 12.5 ml/min per g of tissue. This correlation was good both in individual dogs (correlation coefficient [r]ranging from 0.78 to 0.96) and in the group of animals as a whole (r = 0.85). Washout slope also showed a good correlation with coronary diastolic pressure (r = 0.80), which ranged from 23 to 114 mm Hg, suggesting a possible primary effect of pressure on contrast washout. However, coronary blood flow appeared to be a stronger predictor of washout slope (partial F = 26.5, p < 0.001) than did perfusion pressure (partial F = 5.9, p < 0.05 by multiple regression). The injection to injection variability in myocardial washout slope appeared to be high (24%). The gamma variate fitting of curves did not improve the correlation with coronary flow (r = 0.78).
Conclusions. Myocardial washout of sonicated iopamidol reflects coronary blood flow in a model in which coronary autoregulation is abolished.
- Received December 13, 1991.
- Revision received April 24, 1992.
- Accepted May 6, 1992.