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A new method of assessing left ventricular (LV) systolic function without terminating assisted circulation (AC) was investigated using a LV volume catheter (conductance catheter) in canine cardiopulmonary bypass (CPB) (Group 1, n = 7) and left heart bypass (LHB) (Group 2, n = 5) models. The hearts were subjected to either 20 min of global ischemia (IS), with a subsequent 80 min of reperfusion under CPB, or regional IS under LHB. Instantaneous LV pressure-volume data acquisitions were repeated during transient (15 sec) acute volume loading without terminating bypass. The relationship between the stroke work (SW), determined as the area of the pressure-volume loop, and the end-diastolic volume (EDV), were highly linear at every study point (mean: r = 0.956–0.986 in Group 1, r = 0.974–0.987 in Group 2). The slopes of SW and EDV (preload recruitable stroke work: PRSW) significantly decreased after IS, in both Group 1 and Group 2. In conclusion, measurement of PRSW without terminating bypass seemed to be useful in evaluating LV systolic function in patients under AC.