The effects of intra-aortic balloon pump support on macrocirculation and tissue microcirculation in patients with cardiogenic shock

Corstiaan A den Uil, Wim K Lagrand, Martin van der Ent, Lucia S D Jewbali, Jasper J Brugts, Peter E Spronk, Maarten L Simoons
Cardiology 2009, 114 (1): 42-6

OBJECTIVES: It was the aim of this study to evaluate the effects of intra-aortic balloon pump (IABP) counterpulsation on sublingual microcirculation as a model for tissue perfusion.

METHODS: In 13 patients with cardiogenic shock treated with IABP, the IABP assist ratio was reduced from 1:1 to 1:8 for 15 min. Using sidestream dark field imaging, 117 movie files of the sublingual microcirculation were obtained and quantified at different IABP assist ratios at 3 time points: 1:1 (T0), 1:8 (T1) and 1:1 (T2), respectively. Data are presented as the median and interquartile range.

RESULTS: The median age of the patients was 59 years (range 56-73), and 62% were males. Discontinuation of IABP decreased the mean arterial pressure [75 mm Hg (71-84) at T0 vs. 69 mm Hg (64-79) at T1; p < 0.001], cardiac index [2.9 l/min/m2 (1.6-3.3) at T0 vs. 2.4 l/min/m2 (1.5-2.8) at T1; p = 0.005] and cardiac power index [0.46 W/m2 (0.29-0.59) at T0 vs. 0.36 W/m2 (0.24-0.50) at T1; p = 0.006]. However, these modest changes in macrohemodynamics did not significantly influence sublingual perfused capillary density and capillary red blood cell velocity (p = 0.28 and 0.73, respectively).

CONCLUSION: A temporary, modest decrease in microcirculatory driving force, induced by lowering the IABP assist ratio, does not impair sublingual microcirculatory perfusion as measured by a novel 2-dimensional imaging technique.

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