Administered to patients in doses of 60 cc, ethanol has an inconsistent mild to moderate vasodilating effect on normal and diseased coronary arteries, the American College of Physicians was told.
"Inhaled cigaret smoke has no effect, or at the most, an inconsistent mild vasoconstricting effect on the normal and atherosclerotic coronary vessels," according to Hratch Kasparian, MD, Hahnemann Medical College and Hospital, Philadelphia.
"The demonstration of vasodilatation or vasoconstriction does not imply that coronary blood flow is consequently improved or impaired.
"As long as the effects of chemical agents on intra-aortic pressure, the force and frequency of myocardial contractions, and the essential laws of myocardial metabolism remain unknown, their final impact on the sensitive interwoven mechanism regulating coronary blood flow cannot be appraised," he explained.
In the study reported, selective coronary arteriography of humans was used to evaluate possible coronary vasoactive action of ethanol and inhaled cigaret smoke.