The effects of heart-cavity blood resistivity and volume on endocardial potentials: theoretical predictions

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Journal of theoretical biology

MeSH Headings

Blood Physiological Phenomena; Cardiac Volume; Electric Conductivity; Endocardium (physiology); Heart (physiology); Models, Biological


Theoretical concepts regarding the potential variations within the bloodfilled cavities of the heart caused by excitation of the myocardium are scarce. In an attempt to understand these potential variations, calculations were made of the potentials due to a dipole adjacent to a disk of finite resistivity. The dipole was assumed to be in an infinite two-dimensional medium of higher resistivity. Equations for the potential inside a sphere due to an external source are also given.

On the basis of the results, predictions were made on the effects of the intracardiac blood on the endocardial potentials: (1) the potential at the center of the cavity is independent of blood resistivity and equivalent to the free space potential; (2) potentials due to a tangential dipole are uniformly reduced; (3) potentials due to a radial dipole are smaller near the dipole, but greater at the far end of the dipole axis; (4) for a dipole radial to or making an angle with the cavity, potentials are reduced at some points but increased at others; (5) the potential along the transverse axis of the dipole has a constant value depending on conductivity; (6) intracardiac blood tends to smooth out potential variations within the cavity; (7) the potential depends both on dipole distance and direction; and (8) if the cavity volume increases, potentials decrease with distance from the dipole; the potential at the adjacent endocardial wall changes little.




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