Exaggerated wave reflection in the kangaroo simulates arterial counterpulsation

A. P. Avolio*, W. W. Nichols, M. F. O'Rourke

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


The ascending aortic pressure wave in kangaroos is quite different from that seen in other experimental animals and in humans, despite an ascending aortic flow wave that is virtually identical. The diastolic pressure surge in the ascending aortic pressure wave of kangaroos is very prominent--so much so that peak diastolic pressure is often greater than peak systolic pressure, with the pressure wave resembling that recorded in humans during intra-aortic balloon counterpulsation. Ascending aortic impedance patterns in kangaroos indicate the presence of a single functionally discrete reflecting site in the peripheral circulation, with high reflection coefficient. All findings--of pulse contour and impedance patterns--are explicable on the basis of arterial anatomy and body shape. Wave reflection from the distant, large, and vascular lower body appears to dominate the effects of wave reflection from the short, small, and less vascular head and forelimb system.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)R267-R270
Number of pages4
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Regulatory Integrative and Comparative Physiology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 1984


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