Ventricular volume (mL)

FIGURE 8 The effect of an increase in aortic pressure on the ejection loop is shown by the dashed lines. Note that stroke volume decreases because of an increase in end-systolic volume.

constant and thus the contraction cannot be called isotonic in the strict sense of the word. When the load on a muscle changes as it shortens, it is called an auxotonic contraction. Figure 10 shows how the ejection loop can be redrawn to depict accurately the auxotonic conditions. This simply means that end-systolic volume is determined by the aortic pressure at the time of closure of the aortic valve.

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