1. Blood velocity measurements have been made in the superficial femoral artery, 10 cm downstream of the common femoral artery bifurcation, in healthy human subjects, using a multi-channel Doppler ultrasound device.
2. In a randomized double-blind protocol, the effects of isosorbide dinitrate were examined during a 2 h period.
3. The changes induced by isosorbide dinitrate include: (i) an increase in the width of the artery and a reduction in brachial arterial blood pressure, implying relaxation of arterial smooth muscle; (ii) an increase in reverse flow and a decrease in time-averaged mean velocity associated with a relatively small decrease of the velocity excursion during the cardiac cycle, implying an increase in flow pulsatility; and (iii) an alteration of the flow pattern both in the core and near the vessel walls.