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Chapter: Medical Physiology: Muscle Blood Flow and Cardiac Output During Exercise; the Coronary Circulation and schemic Heart Disease

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Function of the Heart After Recovery from Myocardial Infarction

Occasionally, a heart that has recovered from a large myocardial infarction returns almost to full functional capability, but more frequently its pumping capability is permanently decreased below that of a healthy heart.

Function of the Heart After Recovery from Myocardial Infarction

Occasionally, a heart that has recovered from a large myocardial infarction returns almost to full functional capability, but more frequently its pumping capability is permanently decreased below that of a healthy heart. This does not mean that the person is necessar-ily a cardiac invalid or that the resting cardiac output is depressed below normal, because the normal heart is capable of pumping 300 to 400 per cent more blood per minute than the body requires during rest—that is, a normal person has a “cardiac reserve” of 300 to 400 per cent. Even when the cardiac reserve is reduced to as little as 100 per cent, the person can still perform normal activity of a quiet, restful type but not strenu-ous exercise that would overload the heart.



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