Diaphragm fatigue induced by inspiratory resistive loading in spontaneously breathing rabbits

T. K. Aldrich, D. Appel

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Diaphragmatic contractility was assessed in spontaneously breathing ketamine-anesthetized rabbits by measuring the strength of diaphragmatic contraction in response to bilateral supramaximal phrenic nerve stimulation at frequencies between 10 and 100 Hz. During 10-180 min of inspiratory resistive loading, contractility decreased by ~40%, and hypoxemia and both respiratory and lactic acidosis developed. After 10 min of recovery, both the response to high-frequency stimulation (100 Hz) and the arterial PO2 and PCO2 returned to base-line levels, whereas metabolic acidosis and reduced response to low-frequency stimulation (10-20 Hz) persisted. Similar levels of hypoxemia and respiratory acidosis in the absence of inspiratory resistive loading did not alter diaphragmatic contractility. We conclude that in anesthetized rabbits excessive inspiratory resistive loading results in partially reversible diaphragm fatigue of the high- and low-frequency types, accompanied by hypoventilation and lactic acidosis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1527-1532
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of applied physiology
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1 1985


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Physiology (medical)

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