Central venous pressure (CVP) measurement along with invasive arterial pressure measurement are the two most widely used monitoring parameters in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) and in the operating room (OR).In contrast with left heart catheterization, right heart catheterization is a procedure which is performed in the daily clinical practice both in the OR and the ICU and with which all anesthesiologists are well familiarized. Despite the limited usefulness of absolute CVP values, analysis of the CVP waveform offers important information regarding patient’s underlying pathology.ECG tracing should be taken concurrently with CVP measurement and CVP should be evaluated and interpreted in relationship to the ECG. CVP values are affected by several parameters such as mechanical ventilation and PEEP application, which should be taken into account when interpreting CVP measurements. Tricuspid regurgitation (TR) is a relatively common abnormality and in most of the cases it is asymptomatic and has no clinical significance. In regard to etiology, TR can be categorized as primary (or organic) and secondary (or functional).TR allows blood to flow backwards across the valve from the right ventricle to the right atrium during right ventricle systole. When blood backflow is significant there may be giant systolic V waves in the CVP waveform. In case of severe TR, the giant systolic V waves are so prominent that the CVP waveform resembles the right ventricular pressure contour. This is called ventricularization of the right atrial pressure waveform. In contrast with the giant V waves in the CVP waveform, ventricularization of the right atrial pressure waveform is the most specific diagnostic criterion of severe TR. TR disease is diagnosed and thoroughly evaluated by echocardiography, which can give us information about its etiology and severity. However, CVP waveform may be indicative of TR and therefore could trigger further investigation and evaluation by echocardiography. Continue reading

Η βελτίωση των χειρουργικών τεχνικών αλλά κυρίως των χημειοθεραπευτικών σχημάτων αύξησε κατά πολύ την επιβίωση των ασθενών με κακοήθη νόσο των πνευμόνων. Οι ασθενείς που έχουν υποβληθεί σε θωρακοχειρουργική επέμβαση για κακοήθη νόσο πνευμόνων, έχουν αυξημένη πιθανότητα να υποβληθούν σε μια νέα διαγνωστική ή θεραπευτικήεπέμβαση, λόγω υποτροπής της αρχικής νόσου, ή εμφάνισης ενός δεύτερου πρωτοπαθούς όγκου του πνεύμονα.

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Evaluation of monitoring readings, taking into account each patient’s pathology as well as the impact of every medical intervention can guide us to make optimal clinical decisions in the periopeative setting. We present three cases in which clinical decisions concerning the management of acute perioperative pulmonary hypertension were based both on haemodynamic monitoring readings and on each patient’s specific pathology. First case: After anesthesia induction in a patient with severe aortic valve insufficiency, an increase in pulmonary artery pressure was recorded. Infusion of isoprenaline, which has a positive chronotropic effect, decreased diastolic time, diastolic blood flow into the left ventricle and also pulmonary artery pressure. Second case: A patient with severe aortic valve stenosis was found with increased pulmonary artery pressure. Intravenous administration of atenolol (1+1mg) reduced the heart rate and the pulmonary artery pressure. Third case: A 15 year old patient with aortic isthmus rupture underwent open surgical repair with graft interposition. After establishment of one lung ventilation and left thoracotomy, pulmonary artery pressure increased. Pulmonary hypertension was managed successfully by oxygen insufflation to the non-ventilated left lung. In our first patient, heart rate increase reduced diastolic time, which decreased the amount of retrograde blood flow into the left ventricle through the regurgitant aortic valve. In the second patient, the heart rate reduction decreased blood flow velocity through the stenotic aortic valve as well as the pressure gradient between left ventricular chamber and aorta. In both patients, enhanced left ventricular function resulted in a reduction in pulmonary artery pressure. Decrease of the alveolar partial pressure of oxygen (PAO2) is the most important parameter that stimulates hypoxic pulmonary vasoconstriction. Oxygen insufflation increased PAO2, resulting in a decrease in pulmonary artery pressure .Clinical decisions based on haemodynamic monitoring readings resulted in effective management of pulmonary hypertension and in a good patient outcome.

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