Clinical studies in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) showed that structural and functional alterations of the lung microcirculation are major factors for the development of pulmonary hypertension and right ventricular hypertrophy during COPD-associated hypoxemia. In addition, pulmonary microcirculatory dysfunctions associated with diabetes mellitus increase the gravity of the ongoing COPD. The present study aims to investigate cardiac morphological variables secondary to pulmonary emphysema induced by porcine pancreatic elastase in diabetic rats. The study includes: 1) evaluation of body weight/heart weight ratio; 4) heart morphological analysis.
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