Capillaries play a critical role in cardiovascular function as the point of exchange of nutrients and waste products between tissues and circulation. A common problem for healthy volunteers examined during isolation, and for the patients suffering from heart failure is a quantitative estimation tissue oedema. Until now, objective assessment body fluids retention in tissues did not exist. Optical imaging of living capillaries is a challenging and medically important scientific problem.
Goal of the investigation was to study dynamic of microcriculation parameters including tissue oedema in healthy volunteers during extended isolation and relative hypokinesia as a model of mission to the International Space Station. The other aim was to study dynamic of microcirculation parameters including tissue oedema in patients suffering from heart failure under treatment.
Healthy volunteers and patients. We studied four healthy male subjects at the age of 41, 37, 40, and 48 before the experiment (June 1999), and during the 240-d isolation period starting from July3, 1999. Unique hermetic chambers with artidicial environmental parameters allowed performing this study with maximum similarity to real conditions in the International Space Station (ISS). With the regularity of 3 times a week at the same time, each subject recorded three video episodes with the total length of one-minute using the optical computerized capillaroscope for noninvasive measurement of the capillary diameters sizes, capillary blood velocity as well as the size of the perivascular zone. All this parameters of microcirculation determined during three weeks in 15 patients (10 male, 5 female, aged 62,2±8,8) suffering from heart failure under Furosemid 40 mg 2 times a week, as diuretic.
Results. About 1500 episodes recorded on laser disks and analyzed during this experiment. Every subject had wave-like variations of capillary blood velocity within the minute, week, and month ranges. It was found that the perivascular zone sizes rising during isolation correlate with body mass of subjects and probably depend on retention of body fluids in tissues. Computerized capillaroscopy provides a new opportunity for non-invasive quantitative estimation tissue oedema and suggests for exact management patients suffering from heart failure under diuretic treatment.