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Am J Physiol. 1979 Sep;237(3):E301-7.

Lymph capillary pressure of rat intestinal villi during fluid absorption.


A newly developed intestinal preparation is described for determining lymph capillary pressure (PL) in the villi in vivo and in vitro. Determination of PL provided an estimate of tissue fluid pressure in the villi. PL was related to the fluid absorption rate and increased by lymphatic obstruction. During fluid absorption from isotonic mucosal fluid, PL was 1.4 +/- 0.5 or 1.1 +/- 0.4 cmH2O determined in vivo or in vitro, respectively. Both pressures were essentially in the same range as that (0.7 +/- 0.3--1.3 +/- 0.5 cmH2O) in which the mucosal fluid was isotonic Na2SO4 solution or Na-free solutions from which little fluid absorption occurred. This range of pressures may be taken as the normal tissue fluid pressure in the villi. At a high rate of fluid absorption from hypotonic mucosal fluid, PL increased to 5.2 +/- 1.4 cmH2O and tissue fluid pressure was also similarly increased. It is concluded that the fluid absorptive process by the epithelium could not develop an appreciable hydrostatic pressure in the villus tissue space or in the lymphatics.

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