Background. Perfusion of the coronary circulation with hypoxemic blood from the left ventricle has been postulated to cause myocardial dysfunction during venoarterial extracorporeal membrane oxygenation for respiratory support. Methods. We investigated this hypothesis in 10 anesthetized open-chest piglets (7 to 9 kg) undergoing venoarterial extracorporeal membrane oxygenation after placement of minor-axis sonomicrometry crystals and left ventricular micromanometer. The left atrial partial pressure of oxygen was made hypoxemic (25 to 40 mm Hg) after initiation of extracorporeal membrane oxygenation by ventilation with a hypoxic gas mixture. Left ventricular contractile function, including peak LV pressure, shortening fraction, maximum rate of increase of left ventricular pressure, velocity of circumferential fiber shortening, end-systolic pressure-minor axis dimension relationship, and preload recruitable dimensional stroke work, was measured or calculated on extracorporeal membrane oxygenation before (baseline) and at 4 and 6 hours after rendering the left atrial blood hypoxemic. Results. Left ventricular shortening fraction and velocity of circumferential fiber shortening were significantly lower (p < 0.05) at 4 and 6 hours when compared with baseline. The slope of the end-systolic pressure-minor axis dimension relationship decreased but was not significantly different at 4 and 6 hours when compared with baseline owing to poor linear correlation (r = 0.30 to 0.93). The preload recruitable dimensional stroke work was more linear (r = 0.87 to 0.99), and the slope was significantly lower (p < 0.01) at 4 and 6 hours when compared with baseline. Conclusions. Hypoxemic cardiac output from the left ventricle during venoarterial extracorporeal membrane oxygenation is associated with depression of left ventricular systolic function in this animal model. Current use of venoarterial extracorporeal membrane oxygenation for respiratory support may not provide adequate oxygen supply to the myocardium.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine