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June 16, 1975

The Physiological Basis of Starling's Law of the Heart

Author Affiliations

Duke University Medical Center Durham, NC

JAMA. 1975;232(11):1171. doi:10.1001/jama.1975.03250110051031

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This symposium brought together a group of experts who are studying the entire gamut of cardiac physiology from the sarcomere to the integrated aspects of function in the whole heart. The contributions vary somewhat in quality but most are good to excellent. One of the most enlightening sections describes recent measurements of the movement of sarcomeres in cardiac muscle obtained with a light diffraction technique. The paucity of studies dealing with function of the intact heart is the weakest aspect of the book. The discussion sections are succinct and bring out quite clearly what the participants were thinking about and which of the concepts put forth were the most controversial.

The book is extremely well edited. The text contains a number of illustrations that add considerably to the presentations. The work presented is up-to-date and, taken as a whole, provides an excellent synopsis of the state of the art concerning