In order to evaluate the effects of acute glomerulonephritis on the circulation, 6 patients were investigated at rest and during moderate exercise. With the patients in a state of rest the cardiac index and the stroke volume index were significantly higher in acute glomerulonephritis than normal, despite significantly raised right and left atrial pressures. Oxygen consumption was significantly increased (P less than 0.01) and the arteriovenous oxygen difference was narrowed significantly (P less than 0.001) in acute glomerulonephritis as compared to normal subjects. The calculated increase in cardiac output was due to both a rise in oxygen consumption and a narrowing of arteriovenous oxygen difference, the latter being more significant. The exercise-induced changes in cardiac output in the patients with glomerulonephritis were not different from those in normal subjects. These results showed that the circulatory changes in the oliguric stage of acute glomerulonephritis resemble those in the hyperkinetic states; the raised mean right atrial and pulmonary wedge pressures do not indicate the presence of heart failure when resting cardiac output is above normal level and response to exercise is normal.
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