Alveolar-capillary membrane diffusion measurement by nitric oxide inhalation in heart failure

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Background: In heart failure, lung diffusion is reduced, it correlates with prognosis and exercise capacity, and it is a therapy target. Design: Diffusion is measured as CO total diffusion (DLCO), which has two components: membrane diffusion (Dm) and capillary volume, the latter related to CO and O2 competition for hemoglobin. DLCO needs to be corrected for hemoglobin. Diffusion can also be measured with NO (DLNO), which has a very high affinity for hemoglobin, and thus, the resistance of hemoglobin being trivial, it directly represents Dm. Therefore, Dm is directly calculated from DLNO through a correction factor. DLNO has never been measured in heart failure. The study aims at determining, in heart failure, DLNO, Dm correction factor, and whether DmNO provides Dm estimates comparable to DmCO. Methods: We measured DLCO, DmCO by multi-maneuver Roughton-Forster method, and DLCO and DLNO by singlebreath maneuver in 50 heart failure and 50 healthy subjects. Results: DLCO was 21.9±4.8 ml/mmHg per min and 16.8±5.1 in healthy subjects and heart failure subjects, respectively (p

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)206-212
Number of pages7
JournalEuropean Journal of Preventive Cardiology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 17 2015


  • gas exchange
  • lung diffusion
  • Oxygen consumption

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Epidemiology
  • Medicine(all)


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