Systemic arterial hemodynamics in the diamond python Morelia spilotes

Albert P. Avolio, Michael F. O'Rourke, Brian T. Bulliman, Max E. Webster, Kem Mang

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Abstract

Studies of pulsatile systemic arterial hemodynamics were conducted in 10 diamond python snakes to test the hypothesis that body shape--through spatial dispersion of peripheral reflecting sites--is an important determinant of impedance patterns and of pulse wave contour. Findings support the hypothesis. Flow patterns in the aortic roots were similar to those in humans, sheep, dogs, rabbits, and guinea pigs, but in contrast to larger animals, little change in flow contour was seen in other arteries. Pressure wave contour was similar in all systemic arteries from which records were taken with no secondary diastolic wave under any circumstances. Impedance patterns at different sites showed none of the fluctuations that in other animals are attributable to discrete wave reflection. Discrete proximal wave reflection at the confluence of aortic arches was minimal. Data are explicable on the basis of widely distributed peripheral reflecting sites--a consequence of the snake's long and tapered body.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)R205-R212
Number of pages8
JournalThe American journal of physiology
Volume243
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep 1982
Externally publishedYes

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Keywords

  • snake
  • arterial hemodynamics
  • comparative physiology
  • wave reflection
  • impedance
  • pulse wave shape

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