After heart-lung transplantation in primates, cardiopulmonary reflexes were tested and shown to be present. The Hering-Breuer and cough reflexes were tested, as well as responses to an inhaled respiratory stimulant, vasodilator, and an intravenous anticholinesterase and antimuscarinic agent. Recovery of these responses, except to the anticholinesterase agent, suggests that reinnervation occurs in autotransplanted organs in primates. The Hering-Breuer reflex was present at 1.9 and 2.2 months after the operation in two animals subjected to autotransplantation. These cardiopulmonary reflex reponses were also demonstrated in two allograft recipients studied at 15 and 16.9 months after the operation. Return of protective reflexes such as coughing may be an important mechanism to prevent aspiration pneumonitis and other complications in humans.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine