Experiments in dogs showed that the high levels of cellular aggregation and trauma caused by cariodtomy suction can be considerably reduced by the avoidance of air aspiration. A hypothesis is proposed to explain this on the basis of shear stresses in the inlet cannula. Roller pump suction was also found to be slightly more traumatic than vaccum suction, but contact of the blood with the pericardium had no effect so long as the pericardium and epicardium had been previously washed with saline.
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