Control of gastric vascular resistance in cardiogenic shock

G. B. Bulkley, A. Oshima, R. W. Bailey, S. D. Horn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


That local splanchnic ischemia is associated with the acute gastric 'stress' erosions seen in shock is well established. The hemodynamic mechanism mediating that ischemia is unknown. Pericardial tamponade was produced in anesthetized pigs while hemodynamic parameters were monitored in the systemic circulation as a whole and in the vascular beds of the celiac and left gastric arteries, respectively. Stepwise increases in pericardial pressure produced progressive decreases in arterial pressure and cardiac output (i.e., reproducible, quantitable, and rapidly reversible levels of cardiogenic shock). This produced a profound reduction in blood flow in the celiac and gastric beds that was significantly disproportionate to the reduction in cardiac output. This was due to significant increases in celiac and gastric vascular resistance that were more than twice as great as those seen in the systemic circulation as a whole (i.e., selective splanchnic vasoconstriction). This response was abolished by ablation of the renin-angiotensin axis, whether by bilateral nephrectomy, captopril, or saralasin, and mimicked, without tamponade, by the infusion of angiotensin II. Levels of celiac artery blood flow and resistance correlated significantly with endogenous levels of plasma renin activity. On the other hand, this response was not abolished by confirmed α-adrenergic blockade (phenoxybenzamine) or by sympathectomy. In this model, cardiogenic shock produces regional splanchnic ischemia in the celiac and gastric vascular beds by inducing a severe and disproportionate vasospasm that is mediated primarily by the renin-angiotensin axis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)213-223
Number of pages11
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1985

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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