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18

Clinical Sedation in Dentistry

The heart
The heart is composed of cardiac muscle; involuntary muscle
tissue only is found within this organ. It is a small but complex
organ. The left side of the heart delivers oxygenated blood, via
the aorta, to the systemmic circulation. The right side of the
heart receives deoxygenated blood (Figure 2.2).
Figure 2.2
Cross-section of the
heart illustrating the flow
of blood through the
chambers and large
vessels.

Cardiac cycle
The cardiac cycle is defined as the sequence of pressure and
volume changes that take place during cardiac activity. The
time of a cycle in a healthy adult is approximately 0.9 seconds,
although it varies considerably, giving an average pulse rate of
around 70 beats per minute (bpm). There are two elements of
the cardiac cycle:
Systole: rapid contraction of heart, 0.3 sec
Diastole: resting phase, 0.5 sec.
Heart rate (HR): The number of ventricular contractions
occurring in one minute.
Stroke volume (SV): The volume of blood ejected in one
ventricular contraction, approximately 70ml.
Cardiac output (CO): The amount of blood ejected from one
ventricle during one minute (i.e. stroke volume heart rate).
The cardiac output of the right ventricle passes through the