Relating left ventricular dimension to maximum elastance by fiber mechanics

R. Beyar, S. Sideman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


The dependence of the pressure-volume slope, which defines the maximum elastance (E(max)) and the zero pressure-volume intercept (V(d)) on the size and dimensions of the left ventricle (LV), is theoretically studied, and a normalizing parameter for E(max) is suggested for normal and hypertrophied hearts. The study is based on our earlier model of the mechanics of the LV contraction, which assumes a nested-shell spheroidal shape, Streeter's fiber angle distribution, given stress-length and stress-strain rate functions of the sarcomeres, a radial propagation of the electrical activation front, and a windkessel arterial model. The study shows that E(max) is linearly related to the maximum force that the optimal length sarcomeres can develop (σ(o)), which is a characteristic measure of the contractility. E(max) decreases and V(d) increases with an increase in ventricular size, at a constant end-diastolic ratio (h/b)(ed), where h is the wall thickness, and b is the semiminor axis of the prolate spheroidal LV. When the reference unstressed volume (V0) is held constant and the wall thickness increases, as in pure concentric hypertrophy, E(max) decreases slightly and shifts to the left to a lower V(d) value. In pure eccentric hypertrophy, wherein chamber size increases while the wall thickness remains constant, E(max) decreases and V(d) increases. A good index for myocardial function at constant configuration ratio (h/b)(ed) is obtained by multiplying E(max) with the LV muscle volume (V(m)). (h/b)(ed) is constant (= 0.45) for the normal heart but increases for concentric hypertrophy. The elastance index [E(max) · V(m) · 0.45/(h/b)(ed)], which accounts for the muscle volume and configuration in hypertrophied hearts, demonstrates the best correlation with the muscle contractility when compared with other indexes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Regulatory Integrative and Comparative Physiology
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1986
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology


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