We have developed a micropuncture technique for the measurement of microvascular pressure in the intact lung of rabbit. We anesthetized 16 rabbits (halothane, 0.8%) and mechanically ventilated them through a tracheotomy. Them, we exposed the right lung by rib resection over the right anterior chest. We measured pulmonary artery, left atrial, and systemic pressures by direct catheterization and cardiac output by the thermodilution technique. For micropuncture, we stabilized the lung on a shelf and stopped ventilation for 3-4 minutes at an airway pressure of 7 cm H2O. We injected pancuronium intravenously to paralyze the diaphragm and intercostal muscles. Of the total pulmonary vascular pressure drop, 52% occurred in the microvascular segment between arterioles and venules of 20 μm diameter, 28% occurred in the arterial segment, and 20% occurred in the venous segment. We conclude that in the intact lung of rabbit, the major pressure drop occurs in the microvascular segment.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine