The influence of an increase in heart rate on left ventricular (LV) contractile performance was assessed in patients with normal LV function. In 19 patients (3 men, 16 women) ages 55 ± 9 years (mean ± standard deviation) with normal global and segmentai LV function and normal coronary arteries, LV dP dt max was measured at baseline heart rate and during atrial pacing at baseline +5, baseline +25 and baseline +45 beats/min. In 10 of the patients, intravascular volume was not altered during pacing and, as a result, echocardiographically measured LV end-diastolic dimension decreased (5.4 ± 0.4 at baseline vs 4.9 ± 0.5 cm at baseline +45 beats/min, p < 0.05). In these patients, LV dP dt max increased modestly (1,571 ± 237 at baseline vs 1,760 ± 199 mm Hg/s at baseline +45 beats/min, p < 0.05). In the other 9 patients, intravascular volume was expanded rapidly (by saline infusion) during pacing and, as a result, LV end-diastolic dimension was held constant (5.2 ± 0.6 at baseline vs 5.1 ± 0.6 cm at baseline +45 beats/min, difference not significant). In these patients, LV dP dt max increased substantially with pacing (1,505 ± 228 at baseline vs 2,050 ± 258 mm Hg/s at baseline +45 beats/min, p < 0.05). Thus, an increase in heart rate induces a modest increase in LV dP dt max in patients in whom LV preload (as reflected by end-diastolic dimension) is allowed to decrease; in contrast, it causes a marked increase in LV dP dt max in those in whom LV preload is maintained constant.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine