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Haemodynamic effects of atrial natriuretic peptide in hypoxic chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.
  1. T K Rogers,
  2. W Sheedy,
  3. J Waterhouse,
  4. P Howard,
  5. A H Morice
  1. Department of Medicine and Pharmacology, University of Sheffield, Royal Hallamshire Hospital, UK.


    BACKGROUND--Pulmonary artery pressure is elevated in patients with advanced chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Release of atrial natriuretic peptide (ANP) is increased in pulmonary hypertension and this hormone may both selectively vasodilate pulmonary vessels and inhibit pulmonary vascular remodelling. The hypothesis that ANP has a physiological role in protection of the pulmonary circulation from pressure overload, and that it may be beneficial in patients with COPD, has been examined. METHODS--Ten patients with hypoxic COPD were infused for 30 minute periods with saline followed by ANP at 0.4, 2, and 10 pmol/kg/min respectively via a pulmonary artery catheter whilst monitoring haemodynamics and oxygenation. RESULTS--Levels of immunoreactive ANP (irANP) increased from a mean (SD) of 23 (15) pmol/l to a maximum of 94 (41) pmol/l. Neither systemic blood pressure, cardiac output nor total systemic vascular resistance showed any correlation with irANP levels. There were negative correlations between levels of ANP and mean pulmonary artery pressure which fell from 28.7 to 25.9 mm Hg, pulmonary artery wedge pressure which fell from 6.5 to 4.6 mmHg, and total pulmonary vascular resistance which fell from 489 to 428 dynes s cm-5. There was a small fall in PaCO2 from 6.2 to 5.9 kPa, whilst venous admixture and oxygen delivery both increased non-significantly. CONCLUSIONS--At these pathophysiological concentrations there was evidence that ANP selectively reduced right ventricular afterload. These data support the hypotheses that increased plasma levels of ANP may be beneficial in hypoxic COPD, and that endogenous ANP may ameliorate pulmonary hypertension in humans.

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