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Effect of high local temperature on reflex cutaneous vasodilation.

Abstract

We examined the effect of high local forearm skin temperature (Tloc) on reflex cutaneous vasodilator responses to elevated whole-body skin (Tsk) and internal temperatures. One forearm was locally warmed to 42 degrees C while the other was left at ambient conditions to determine if a high Tloc could attenuate or abolish reflex vasodilation. Forearm blood flow (FBF) was monitored in both arms, increases being indicative of increases in skin blood flow (SkBF). In one protocol, Tsk was raised to 39-40 degrees C 30 min after Tloc in one arm had been raised to 42 degrees C. In a second protocol, Tsk and Tloc were elevated simultaneously. In protocol 1, the locally warmed arm showed little or no change in blood flow in response to increasing Tsk and esophageal temperature (average rise = 0.76 +/- 1.18 ml X 100 ml-1 X min-1), whereas FBF in the normothermic arm rose by an average of 8.84 +/- 3.85 ml X 100 ml-1 X min-1. In protocol 2, FBF in the normothermic arm converged with that in the warmed arm in three of four cases but did not surpass it. We conclude that local warming to 42 degrees C for 35-55 min prevents reflex forearm cutaneous vasodilator responses to whole-body heat stress. The data strongly suggest that this attenuation is via reduction or abolition of basal tone in the cutaneous arteriolar smooth muscle and that at a Tloc of 42 degrees C a maximum forearm SkBF has been achieved. Implicit in this conclusion is that local warming has been applied for a duration sufficient to achieve a plateau in FBF.

PMID:
6469780
DOI:
10.1152/jappl.1984.57.1.191
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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