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J Appl Physiol (1985). 2002 Dec;93(6):2137-46. Epub 2002 Sep 6.

Effects of transmural pressure on brachial artery mean blood velocity dynamics in humans.

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  • 1Division of Cardiology, Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine, Milton S. Hershey Medical Center, Hershey, Pennsylvania 17033, USA.


The effects of changes in transmural pressure on brachial artery mean blood velocity (MBV) were examined in humans. Transmural pressure was altered by using a specially designed pressure tank that raised or lowered forearm pressure by 50 mmHg within 0.2 s. Brachial MBV was measured with Doppler directly above the site of forearm pressure change. Pressure changes were evoked during resting conditions and after a 5-s handgrip contraction at 25% maximal voluntary contraction. The handgrip protocol selected was sufficiently vigorous to limit flow and sufficiently brief to prevent autonomic engagement. Changes in transmural pressure evoked directionally similar changes in MBV within 2 s. This was followed by large and rapid adjustments [-2.14 +/- 0.24 cm/s (vasoconstriction) during negative pressure and +2.14 +/- 0.45 cm/s (vasodilatation) during positive pressure]. These adjustments served to return MBV to resting levels. This regulatory influence remained operative after 5-s static handgrip contractions. Of note, changes in transmural pressure were capable of altering the timing of the peak MBV response (5 +/- 0, 2 +/- 0, 6 +/- 1 s ambient, negative, and positive pressure, respectively) as well as the speed of MBV adjustment (-2.03 +/- 0.18, -2.48 +/- 0.15, -0.84 +/- 0.19 cm x s(-1) x s(-1) ambient, negative, and positive pressure, respectively) after handgrip contractions. Vascular responses, seen with changes in transmural pressure, provide evidence that the myogenic response is normally operative in the limb circulation of humans.

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