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Am Heart J. 1992 May;123(5):1288-92.

Evaluation of aortic distensibility with transesophageal echocardiography.

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Ohio State University, Department of Internal Medicine, Columbus.


Distensibility of the descending aorta was evaluated during routine transesophageal echocardiography (TEE) in 50 subjects (16 to 80 years, average age 53). M-mode measurements of aortic systolic (SD) and diastolic diameter (DD) were taken distal to the left subclavian artery. Simultaneously, cuff brachial artery systolic (SBP) and diastolic (DBP) pressures were measured. Aortic pressure strain modulus (Ep), calculated as brachial artery pulse pressure/aortic strain, averaged 1.19 +/- 0.95 10(6) dynes/cm2. Elasticity index beta, defined as 1n (SBP/DBP)/aortic strain, averaged 3.77 +/- 2.12. Both Ep and beta were correlated with age (r = 0.65, p less than 0.001; and r = 0.70, p less than 0.0001). In 20 subjects aortic pulse wave velocity was assessed at the same time using simultaneous high fidelity recordings of carotid and femoral artery pressure waveforms. Aortic pulse wave velocity averaged 818 +/- 231 cm/sec and was correlated with Ep (r = 0.60, p less than 0.01) and with age (r = 0.55, p less than 0.05). Intraobserver and interobserver variability for aortic diameter measurement ranged from 0.2 to 0.5 mm.

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