For a given level of arterial distensibility, the amplitude of the arterial pulse is directly related to the left ventric-ular (LV) stroke volume. Thus, rapid changes in arterial pulse pressure, the difference between systolic and dia-stolic pressures, essentially reflect changes in LV stroke volume. During mechanical ventilation, cyclic inspiratory in-creases in pleural pressure are transmitted to the intra-thoracic aorta, resulting in a cyclic inspiratory increase in arterial pressure . However, this transmission of pleural pressure produces a similar increase in both systolic and diastolic pressures, and does not increase the arterial pulse pressure. Cyclic changes in arterial pulse pressure during posi-tive-pressure ventilation, in patients ventilated on con
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