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Signa Vitae

Journal of Intensive Care and Emergency Medicine

CPR flow to prime the ischemic heart during cardiac arrest?


Cardiac arrest is unique among cardiac ischemic syndromes in that all circulation must be generated external to the heart. Although, chest compressions deliver limited blood flow, it may be possible to take advantage of this cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) low-flow state to “prime” the heart in advance of return of restoration of spontaneous circulation. Prior investigation has demonstrated improved cardiac function after perfusing the globally ischemic heart with a cardioprotective agent under low-flow perfusion conditions (modeling CPR flow). These results raise the question as to whether CPR-generated flow can be utilized to induce pharmacological post-conditioning in the arrested heart.

Key words: low-flow, CPR, post-conditioning, cardioprotect

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Low flow, minimal flow and closed circuit system inhalational anesthesia in modern clinical practice


Low, minimal flow and closed circuit anesthesia has been pursued since the beginning of the history of anesthesia. For many decades this form of anesthesia has been restricted to devoted enthusiasts and those very fond of gas kinetics. For most clinicians, selecting a fresh flow gas higher than 3-5 L/min was widely accepted as a routine anesthesia technique. The introduction onto the market of new volatile agents as well as advanced anesthesia machines accompanied by highly reliable monitoring systems, made minimal flow or closed system anesthesia feasible on a daily basis. Clinical, cultural, environmental, pharmacological, technological and economic reasons, force the modern anesthesiologist to reconsider the role of minimal flow and closed circuit volatile anesthesia, in clinical practice. This paper analyses the main advantages offered by these anesthesia techniques.

Key words: anesthesia, low flow, minimal flow, closed circuit, body temperature, humidification

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