Is the Microcirculation the Key in Understanding the Development of Shock After Cardiothoracic Surgery?
Toet, Rowan (TU Delft Mechanical, Maritime and Materials Engineering)
Arbous, M.S. (mentor)
Degree granting institution
Tsonaka, R (mentor)
Brouwer, F (mentor)
Mik, E.G. (graduation committee)
Harlaar, J. (graduation committee)
Delft University of Technology
Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam
Technical Medicine | Sensing and Stimulation
Cardiothoracic surgery is a common treatment for cardiovascular diseases. Patients are admitted to the ICU after cardiothoracic surgery for continuous monitoring to prevent or treat postoperative complications as much and as soon as possible. One of these complications is the development of circulatory shock. It is likely caused by one or a combination of several factors, leading to increased morbidity and mortality in the ICU. The main purpose of the circulation is to transport O2 and nutrients to the tissues and remove waste products of the tissues via the tissue’s microcirculation. Under normal conditions, O2 supply exceeds O2 demand. However, during circulatory shock, the circulation cannot meet the perfusion demands of the organs, leading to organ dysfunction and organ failure. Resuscitation procedures for patients with circulatory shock focus on normalizing macrocirculatory parameters, such as CO and SvO2, by administering fluids and vasopressors to support tissue perfusion. Improvement in macrocirculatory parameters is expected to be paralleled by improvement in microcirculatory perfusion and tissue oxygenation (i.e., hemodynamic coherence), but it appears that these do not always improve simultaneously. Loss of this coherence has been associated with adverse outcomes.
The microcirculation can be imaged sublingually with an HVM. Studies in patients with septic shock have shown that hemodynamic coherence is often lacking. Therefore, it could be valuable to monitor the microcirculation of cardiothoracic surgery patients.
This thesis aimed to investigate the postoperative time course of microcirculatory parameters in patients admitted to the ICU after cardiothoracic surgery with and without circulatory shock, the relationship between macro- and microcirculation, and the usage of leukocyte detection in understanding patient’s systemic inflammation.
Chapter 2 provides general background information on cardiothoracic surgery, CPB, the physiology of the microcirculation, the latest generation of HVM, pathophysiological changes in the microcirculation after cardiothoracic surgery, leukocyte-endothelium interactions, the macrocirculation, and hemodynamic coherence. A retrospective study of cardiothoracic surgical patients with shock is described in Chapter 3 of this thesis. The results showed that the microcirculation might adapt to compensate for the circulatory shock state by decreasing RBCv and increasing FCD, TVD, and cHct compared with normal values of healthy volunteers while maintaining tRBCp. Chapter 4 describes a prospective study comparing cardiothoracic surgical patients with shock from Chapter 3 with cardiothoracic surgical patients without shock. The comparison between these two groups showed that both groups exhibited different behavior of the microcirculation. However, the underlying mechanism is not understood and requires further research. Chapter 5 contains an explanatory review of the use of STDs for leukocyte detection. Chapter 6 provides a general discussion and reviews the future prospects of microcirculation measurements as a tool in the management of critically ill patients. Our findings should be examined in more extensive clinical trials to determine whether microcirculatory changes contribute to the development of shock.
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© 2023 Rowan Toet