Clinical application of vacuum-assisted cardiopulmonary bypass with a pressure relief valve

Y Hayashi, K Kagisaki, T Yamaguchi, T Sakaguchi, Y Naka, Y Sawa, S Ohtake, H Matsuda
European Journal of Cardio-thoracic Surgery 2001, 20 (3): 621-6

OBJECTIVES: Hemodilution induced by cardiopulmonary bypass (CPB) often prevents open heart operations without blood transfusion because of a large CPB-priming volume. A vacuum-assisted venous drainage system appears to overcome this problem and our previous experimental study demonstrated the beneficial effect of a vacuum-assisted CPB with a pressure relief valve. In this study, we clinically applied this novel system, and evaluated its efficacy by comparing it with the results of a conventional siphon-dependent drainage system.

METHODS: Sixty patients undergoing open heart operation were divided into Group V (vacuum-assisted system, n=30) and Group S (siphon-dependent system, n=30). The vacuum-assisted system contains a powerful vacuum generator and a pressure relief valve to keep the negative pressure in the reservoir constant when the blood suction is used.

RESULTS: The CPB-priming volume was significantly smaller in Group V (V vs. S: 1071+/-88 vs. 1405+/-137 ml; P<0.01), resulting in the lower hemodilution in Group V evidenced by the minimum hemoglobin level (V vs. S: 6.83+/-1.06 vs. 5.78+/-0.79 mg/dl; P<0.01) and blood transfusion rate (V vs. S: 9 vs. 20%; P<0.01). There were no significant differences in the plasma free hemoglobin level and the reduction ratio of plasma haptoglobin between the groups.

CONCLUSIONS: These data demonstrate that this vacuum-assisted CPB can provide simplification of the CPB circuit, resulting in a smaller CPB-priming volume and lower hemodilution. This vacuum-assisted CPB may attenuate the negative effect of CPB by minimizing hemodilution and appears to be a useful modification to accomplish no blood-requiring open heart operations.

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