JOURNAL ARTICLE

Poor correlation between pulmonary arterial wedge pressure and left ventricular end-diastolic volume after coronary artery bypass graft surgery

R M Hansen, C E Viquerat, M A Matthay, J P Wiener-Kronish, T DeMarco, S Bahtia, J D Marks, E H Botvinick, K Chatterjee
Anesthesiology 1986, 64 (6): 764-70
3487261
The authors studied 12 surgical patients in the intensive care unit post coronary artery bypass graft surgery and ten nonsurgical patients in the coronary care unit with chronic heart failure to determine the usefulness of the pulmonary arterial wedge pressure as an indicator of left ventricular preload. Left ventricular end diastolic volume was derived from concomitant determination of ejection fraction (gated blood pool scintigraphy) and stroke volume (determined from thermodilution cardiac output). In the nonsurgical patients, there was a significant correlation between changes in pulmonary arterial wedge pressure and left ventricular end-diastolic volume (P less than 0.05, r = 0.57). In the 12 patients studied during the first few hours after surgery, there was a poor correlation between changes in pulmonary wedge pressure (range = 4-32 mmHg) and left ventricular end-diastolic volume (range = 25-119 ml/m2), and a poor correlation between pulmonary arterial wedge pressures and stroke work index. In contrast, there was a good correlation between left ventricular end-diastolic volume and stroke work index. The poor correlation between the pulmonary arterial wedge pressure and left ventricular end-diastolic volume was not explained by changes in systemic or pulmonary vascular resistance. The altered ventricular pressure-volume relationship may reflect acute changes in ventricular compliance in the first few hours following coronary artery bypass graft surgery. While measurement of pulmonary arterial wedge pressure remains valuable in clinical management to avoid pulmonary edema, it cannot reliably be used as an index of left ventricular preload while attempting to optimize stroke volume in patients immediately following coronary artery bypass graft surgery.

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