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Changes in volume in response to increasing intraluminal pressure of normal thoracic and abdominal aortas, fresh and frozen autografts, and homografts preserved either by freezing at −79 ° C. or freezing and drying in vacuo have been measured and used to calculate the volume, distensibility coefficients. Volume distensibility/pressure curves have been constructed by plotting the distensibility coefficients against the intraluminal pressure.
The volume distensibility/pressure curves of aortic autografts at 4, 11, and 33 weeks after implantation were similar in shape to that of normal aorta, but the distensibility coefficients were consistently lower. This general resemblance was taken to mean that both the elastic tissue and the collagen in the wall of the autograft took part in the response to distention, though the activity of the former appeared to be slightly impaired.
The volume distensibility/pressure curves of all the homografts showed the very flat curve characteristic of collagenous tissue alone. The distensibility coefficients were much lower at low pressures than normal aorta or aortic autografts, and approximately the same at higher pressures. It appeared that the elastic tissue in the wall of the homograft, though prominent histologically, played very little part in the response to distention 4 weeks after transplantation.
One Teflon prosthesis, implanted 3 months, gave a volume distensibility/pressure curve which corresponded to Hooke's law for inorganic materials.
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Received: November 13, 1961
☆Supported by a grant from the Scottish Hospitals Endowment Research Trust.
© 1962 Published by Elsevier Inc.