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Signa Vitae

Journal of Intensive Care and Emergency Medicine

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The role of nitric oxide in apoptosis modulation in newborns with pneumonia

Abstract

Introduction. Nitric oxide (NO) is an important diagnostic marker and mediator in the inflammatory process, which plays a key role in the mechanism of programmed cell death, thus, forming the basis of many pathological diseases.

Methods. The study involved 73 newborns with pneumonia (moderate severity in 44 neonates (group 1), severe pneumonia in 29 (group 2)). The intensity of neutrophil apoptosis and necrosis was determined by flow cytometry, whereas nitric oxide metabolites were measured by spectrophotometry.

Results. The level of nitric oxide metabolites (NO2+NO3) in newborns with pneumonia was higher than in healthy children (16.93 (15.82; 17.79) μmol/ml) and correlated with disease severity (in group 1 – 22.65 (21.42; 23.40) μmol/ml in group 2 – 26.82 (25.81; 27.91) μmol/ml). The level of NO3 increased moderately, while NO2 generation was more intense, exceeding control indexes in both groups (рc1<0.001; рc2<0.001; р12<0.001).

The occurrence of intensive neutrophil apoptosis was revealed in newborns with pneumonia of moderate severity (рc1<0.001), while necrosis prevailed in severe pneumonia (рc2<0.001).

Inverse correlation (R=-0.63; р<0.05) was found between the level of nitric oxide metabolites and neutrophil apoptosis; and direct correlation (R=0.68; р<0.05) was revealed between NO metabolites and neutrophil necrosis indices.

Conclusions. Increased generation of nitric oxide metabolites, that directly correlated with disease severity in newborns with pneumonia, was found. NO2 has multidirectional effects on neutrophil apoptosis and necrosis, leading to toxic accumulation of neutrophils in the organism, thus enhancing the inflammatory and intoxication process that impact disease severity.

Key words: nitric oxide, apoptosis, necrosis, neutrophils, pneumonia, newborn

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Bronchoscopy during non-invasive ventilation in a patient with acute respiratory distress syndrome

Abstract

A 72-year-old man was transferred to our hospital for refractory severe acute respiratory syndrome. On arrival, he was intubated and mechanically ventilated. Furthermore, he required veno-venous extracorporeal membrane oxygenation. Two days later, he was extubated and supported with periods of non-invasive ventilation (NIV), with a new mask. Because of large amounts of bronchial secretions that he was not able to expectorate, flexible fiberoptic bronchoscopy (FFB) was performed to remove the secretions, without interrupting NIV support. During the procedure, the patient remained hemodynamically stable, breathing spontaneously and with just a mild reduction in oxygen saturation (SpO2) (97.9% vs. 96.8%). This case report highlights the possibility of performing upper endoscopic procedures, such as FFB, during non-invasive ventilation in patients in whom this respiratory support is required and its interruption may be harmful.

Key words: non-invasive ventilation, acute respiratory distress syndrome, flexible fiberoptic bronchoscopy, intensive care unit

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How I use skeletal muscle Near Infrared Spectroscopy to non-invasively assess hemodynamic status of the critically ill

Abstract

The major goal of hemodynamic treatment is to reach adequate flow. Near infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) allows non-invasive assessment of skeletal muscle tissue oxygenation during rest and also during vascular occlusion test (VOT). VOT allows estimation of tissue oxygen extraction capability, which could be preserved (i.e. hypovolemic, obstructive and cardiogenic shock) or inappropriate (i.e. sepsis/septic shock). By using ultrasound to estimate cardiac output, arterial hemoglobin oxygen saturation, skeletal muscle NIRS, arterial lactate and hemoglobin, therapeutic goals in critically ill patients with preserved oxygen extraction capability can easily be targeted. Current controversies of NIRS technology and approach to patients with impaired oxygen extraction are discussed as well.

Key words: shock, skeletal muscle, near-infrared spectroscopy, critically ill

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Real-time 3-dimensional transesophageal echocardiography assessment of left ventricular shape and function after surgical remodelling

Abstract

Background Real-time three dimensional transoesophageal echocardiography (RT 3D-TEE) may better reflect left ventricle (LV) shape and function than cconventional 2D-TEE. The goal of this study was to evaluate the advantages of 3D analysis in shape assessment and to quantify the LV volume by ejection fraction (EF) measurement, after LV surgical remodelling.

Methods In a prospective manner, twenty consecutive coronary surgery patients with LV anteroapical aneurysm and functional mitral regurgitation were analyzed by 2D- and thereafter by 3D- TEE before and after surgery. The key intraoperative inclusion criteria was a LVEF < 30% confirmed by intraoperative 3D-TEE immediately before surgical remodeling.

Results Before surgery, the geometry of post infarction aneurysm shows negative curvatures of the antero-basal and infero-apical segment and the apex of LV is shifted clockwise, towards the mitral valve. Surgery had significantly reduced the LV volumes and the LVEF had increased by 13.3% as recorded by 2D-TEE and by 18.3% as assessed by 3D-TEE quantification (p < 0.001 for both). Accordingly, the longitudinal plane had been shortened, the apex was now shifted anti-clockwise towards the aorta and the inferior region had taken a more important function of the LV. Significantly lower values were observed in the EF measurement with 3D- vs 2D-TEE before remodelling (22.3 vs. 29.7%, p = 0.048).

Conclusion Improvement of LV function occurred due to the increased systolic contraction of the inferior region after remodelling in patients with postinfarction aneurysm.

Key words: intraoperative transesophageal echocardiography (TEE), real-time three dimensional TEE (RT-3D TEE), left ventricle, cardiac surgery

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Right ventricular function in critically ill patients

Abstract

The right ventricular function is crucial for maintaining hemodynamic stability in critically ill patients who suffer from sudden increases of right ventricular pressure overload and/or severely decreased right ventricular contractility. The morphological and functional assessment of the right ventricle is usually performed by bedside echocardiography and hemodynamic measurements with a pulmonary artery catheter. The therapeutic approach to patients with right ventricular failure includes measures to decrease right ventricular afterload and to improve its coronary perfusion and contractility.

Key words: right ventricle, failure, systolic function

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