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January 2, 1926


JAMA. 1926;86(1):38. doi:10.1001/jama.1926.02670270042011

The results of various mechanical changes produced by injury or disease in the circulatory apparatus are frequently overcome, so that the blood flow is maintained in a fairly normal manner. Among the agencies that may accomplish such readjustments, the hypertrophy of the heart muscle and the compensatory dilatation of the cardiac chambers are prominent. The compensatory hypertrophy is not always extended to include the entire heart; it may involve only the musculature of an individual heart compartment, if circumstances demand this. The details of the development of such adjustments are by no means well understood. Like a skeletal muscle, the cardiac musculature tends to increase in the size of its component fibers and in the contractile capacity of the organ, when it is subjected to more work than usual.

Additional light has been thrown on these readjustments by the investigations of Holman and Beck1 of Western Reserve University, Cleveland.

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