Measuring Cardiac Function

  • David R. Gross


The normal cardiovascular system is a finely tuned pump and delivery system functioning together, with optimal efficiency, to match cardiac output to the integrated metabolic demands of the entire corpus. The inherent physical properties of the two systems contribute to the efficiency, and the physiological coordination of central and local control mechanisms assure that all tissues are supplied with appropriate blood supply. Under normal circumstances, local demands for blood flow are met by locally controlled adjustments and diversion of flow to metabolically active tissues without the need to increase pump function. When metabolic demands increase significantly, cardiac output must increase to meet the demand. If the heart is unable to meet the demand, the corpus is, by definition, in heart failure.

The problem for the physician treating patients and for the researcher studying the mechanisms and/or the treatment of cardiovascular disease is to be able to understand and quantify changes in or loss of function.


Frame Rate Ventricular Volume Pulse Repetition Frequency High Heart Rate Ensemble Size 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • David R. Gross
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Veterinary BiosciencesUniversity of Illinois, Urbana Champaign College of Veterinary MedicineUrbanaUSA

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