Regional cerebral blood flow during hypercapnia in the anesthetized rabbit.
These experiments were designed to test the hypothesis that increases in blood flow to the lower brainstem would be greater than forebrain regions during arterial hypercapnia. Total and regional cerebral blood flow (CBF) was measured via the tracer microsphere technique in seven anesthetized New Zealand white rabbits during normocapnia (arterial PCO2 congruent to 40 torr) and hypercapnia (arterial PCO2 congruent to 80 torr). During normocapnia average CBF was 0.77 ml/min/g, and regional measurements of blood flow indicated significantly greater flow to the cerebrum (0.86 ml/min/g) than either the medulla (0.52 ml/min/g) or the pons (0.49 ml/min/g). When arterial PCO2 was increased average CBF increased 113%, and a significant linear regression was calculated for arterial PCO2 vs CBF [CBF (ml/min/g) = 0.028 PCO2 (torr) - 0.502]. The distribution of blood flow within the brain was similar to normocapnia except that blood flow to the cerebellum was now greater than any other brain region (1.97 ml/min/g for the cerebellum compared to 1.66 ml/min/g for the cerebrum). Absolute increases in blood flow to the lower brainstem were equal to or less than other areas of the brain. We conclude that ponto-medullary blood flow does not increase disproportionate to other areas of the brain during hypercapnia, but some redistribution of CBF does occur in that cerebellar blood flow increased significantly more than the cerebrum, medulla, or pons.
- Copyright © 1983 by American Heart Association