2005 Volume 55 Issue 6 Pages 355-364
A general formula (Oka and Azuma's equation) has been rigorously derived for the circumferential wall tension in a hollow cylindrical tube in equilibrium. To evaluate the validity and usefulness of Oka and Azuma's equation, T = P1 × r1 − P2 × r2 (T, circumferential wall tension; P1 and P2, internal and external pressures of the tube; r1 and r2, the corresponding internal and external radii), we experimentally investigated changes in circumferential wall tension of noninjured (control) and injured dog common carotid arteries by using a newly developed apparatus with a photo- and X-ray-sensitive image sensor. We also studied histological features of the control and injured arteries with special reference to the relation of biomechanical properties. Two types of animal models with injured arteries—balloon-induced neointima or external collar-induced intimal thickening—were adopted in the present study. In the control arteries, the circumferential wall tension was experimentally confirmed to change from negative to positive by an increase in intraluminal pressure ranging from 50 to 180 mmHg. The critical intraluminal pressure that produced 0 dyne/cm of the circumferential wall tension was around 135 mmHg. The activation of arterial smooth muscles caused a significant increase in the critical pressure in the control arteries. In the arteries injured by neointima, the critical intraluminal pressure was significantly lower than that in the control. The activation of smooth muscles also significantly increased the critical pressure in the injured arteries. Histological examination demonstrated the existence of a circumferential neointimal formation along with a shortening of the internal diameter. In other arteries injured by intimal thickening, the circumferential wall tension was always negative at intraluminal pressure ranging from 50 to 180 mmHg. Newly developed structures consisted of elastic and collagen fibers, smooth muscles, and extracellular matrix in the intima and media of the injured arteries. These experimental findings suggest that the circumferential wall tension of dog common carotid arteries has been confirmed experimentally to become negative. We have also concluded that circumferential wall tension calculated with Oka-Azuma's equation may be one of the best parameters for evaluating changes in the biomechanical and histological properties of pathologically injured arteries.