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Research Article

Effect of vasoactive agents on intestinal oxygen consumption and blood flow in dogs.

W Pawlik, A P Shepherd and E D Jacobson

Published August 1975

A comparison study of several vasoconstrictor and vasodilator agents was conducted measuring changes in intestinal blood flow and oxygen consumption during 10-min periods of intra-arterial infusion. Blood flow was measured in a branch of the superior mesenteric artery of anesthetized dogs with an electromagnetic blood flow meter, and the arteriovenous oxygen content difference across the gut segment was determined photometrically. Vasopressin (4 x 10(-3) and 7x 10(-4) U/kg-min) diminished blood flow 60 and 28% and reduced oxygen consumption 54 and 22%, respectively (all P less than 0.001). In a dose which did not lower blood flow, vasopressin still caused a decline in oxygen consumption (P less than 0.01). Epinephrine (5 x 10(-2) mug/kg-min) decreased blood flow 19% (P less than 0.001) but did not reduce oxygen consumption. After beta-adrenergic blockade, however, the same dose of epinephrine decreased blood flow 41% and oxygen consumption 33% (both P less than 0.001). Responses to angiotension II, calcium chloride, and prostaglandin F2alpha resembled effects of vasopressin rather than those of epinephrine, namely decreased blood flow and decreased oxygen consumption. The vasodilator agents, prostaglandin E1, is isoproterenol, and histamine, increased (P less than 0.001) both blood flow (130, 80, and 98%, respectively) and oxygen consumption (98, 64, and 70%, respectively). Vasopressin, angiotensin II, calcium chloride, and prostaglandin F2alpha appear to contract arteriolar and precapillary sphincteric smooth muscle indiscriminately to evoke both intestinal ischemia and hypoxia. Epinephrine is the exceptional constrictor in this case, producing diminished blood flow without a reduction in oxygen uptake.

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