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AIMS: Remote ischaemic pre-conditioning (RIPC) reduces distant tissue ischaemia reperfusion injury. We tested the hypothesis that RIPC would protect the left ventricle (LV) from ischaemic dysfunction and stunning. METHODS AND RESULTS: Forty-two patients with single vessel coronary disease and normal LV function were prospectively recruited. Twenty patients had repeated conductance catheter assessment of LV function during serial coronary occlusions with/without RIPC and a further 22 patients underwent serial dobutamine stress echocardiography and tissue Doppler analysis with/without RIPC. Remote ischaemic pre-conditioning was induced by three 5 min inflations of a blood pressure cuff around the upper arm. RIPC did not diminish the degree of ischaemic LV dysfunction during coronary balloon occlusion (Tau, ms: 59.2 (2.8) vs. 62.8 (2.8), P = 0.15) and there was evidence of cumulative LV dysfunction despite RIPC [ejection fraction (EF), %: 54.3 (5.8) vs. 44.9 (3.7), P = 0.03]. Remote ischaemic pre-conditioning did not improve contractile recovery during reperfusion (EF, %: 51.7 (3.6) vs. 51.5 (5.7), P = 0.88 and Tau, ms: 55.6 (2.8) vs. 56.0 (2.0), P = 0.85). A neutral effect of RIPC on LV function was confirmed by tissue Doppler analysis of ischaemic segments at peak dobutamine (V(s), cm s(-1) control: 8.2 (0.4) vs. RIPC 8.1 (0.4), P = 0.43) and in recovery. CONCLUSION: RIPC does not attenuate ischaemic LV dysfunction in humans.

Original publication




Journal article


Eur J Heart Fail

Publication Date





497 - 505


Adult, Aged, Aged, 80 and over, Cardiac Catheterization, Coronary Angiography, Disease Progression, Echocardiography, Doppler, Electrocardiography, Follow-Up Studies, Heart Ventricles, Humans, Ischemic Preconditioning, Myocardial, Male, Middle Aged, Myocardial Contraction, Myocardial Ischemia, Treatment Outcome, Ventricular Dysfunction, Left