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Browsing by Subject "cardiac ultrasound"

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  • Matikainen, Heikki (2011)
    Chronic heart failure is a major worldwide health problem. It is a complex and severe syndrome caused by different kinds of cardiovascular diseases. Cardiac hypertrophy is frequently caused by hypertension and can lead to abnormality in heart contraction, activation of many neurohumoral mechanism and heart failure. The most important neurohormonal mechanisms of heart failure are activation of sympathetic nervous system and the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system, insufficiently contracting left ventricle, cardiac remodeling and myocyte loss owing to apoptosis. Antihypertensive drug treatment is often used to prevent or decelerate progression of cardiac hypertrophy. Activation of the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system plays a major role in heart failure. During the past decades angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors (ACEIs) have been used as firstline treatment of heart failure. ACEI treatment has been shown to reduce mortality associated with chronic heart failure and improve prognosis of the disease. Angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs) were expected to replace ACEIs in the treatment of heart failure but for the present they are only an alternative to ACEIs. Beta-blocking agents which reduce activation of sympathetic nervous system have established themself as the second most important treatment of heart failure. Diuretics are widely used as the treatment of heart failure but only aldosterone antagonists has been shown to improve prognosis of the disease. Also digoxin is still used in the treatment of chronic heart failure. In the future renin inhibitors, neutral endopeptidase inhibitors, vasopressin antagonists and molecules that affect inflammatory cytokines could potentially be capable of improving the prognosis of chronic heart failure patients. The major object in the present study was to investigate development of left ventricular hypertrophy induced by abdominal aorta banding in male Wistar rats and prevention of hypertrophy by calcium sensitizer levosimendan and angiotensin II receptor blocker valsartan. Also functionality of abdominal aorta banding as a rodent model of cardiac hypertrophy and heart failure was estimated. Abdominal aorta was constricted above the right renal arteries. That leads to pressure overload and increase in cardiac load. Heart response to pressure overload by hypertrophy in the form of wall thickening. 64 rats were assigned to different groups, each having eight rats. Three of the groups were treated with levosimendan with different daily doses (0,01 mg/kg; 0,10 mg/kg; 1,00 mg/kg) and three of the groups were treated with valsartan with different daily doses (0,10 mg/kg; 1,00 mg/kg; 10,00 mg/kg) via drinking water for eight weeks after the surgery. Sham-operated group underwent the same surgical procedures without constriction of the aorta. All the groups were compared to abdominal aorta banded group without any medical treatment. Cardiovascular parameters such as isovolumic relaxation time (IVRT), left ventricle end-systolic (ESD) and end-diastolic (EDD) dimensions, ejection fraction (EF), fractional shortening (FS), cardiac output (CO), stroke volume (SV), interventricular septum (IVS) and posterior wall (PW) thickness were measured eight weeks after the surgery by using cardiac ultrasound. In the present study levosimendan slightly improved systolic function of the heart. Improvement of the systolic function was seen in a tendency to improve ejection fraction and fractional shortening in abdominal aorta banded rats compared to abdominal aorta banded rats without medical treatment. Neither levosimendan nor valsartan affected diastolic function of heart. Diastolic function was measured by isovolumic relaxation time. Neither levosimendan nor valsartan had significant effect on development of cardiac hypertrophy. Cardiac hypertrophy was estimated by measuring heart weight-to-body weight ratio (HW/BW), left ventricular wall thicknesses and left ventricular internal dimensions in systole and diastole. The present study indicates that outflow constriction by aortic banding is clearly a model of cardiac hypertrophy but not of heart failure.