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Cardiac output (CO) monitoring based on pulse contour analysis (Vigileo-FloTrac) has the potential to be used for goal-directed fluid therapy in the perioperative setting. However, factors such as vasopressor usage may impact Vigileo-FloTrac's reliability in tracking CO changes. We tested third-generation Vigileo-FloTrac system's ability to accurately measure the changes in CO induced by vasopressor administration and increased preload in comparison with esophageal Doppler measurements.In 33 anesthetized patients, CO was monitored simultaneously by the third-generation Vigileo-FloTrac and esophageal Doppler. Hemodynamic challenges included phenylephrine (to increase vasomotor tone), ephedrine (to increase myocardial contractility and heart rate), and whole-body tilting (to increase preload). Measurements were performed before and after each intervention.Overall, 176 pairs of CO measurements were obtained. The difference between paired pulse contour and Doppler measurements of CO was 0.14 ± 2.13 L/min (mean ± SD), and the percentage error (2 SD of the difference divided by the mean CO of the reference method) was 66%. The trending ability of pulse contour versus Doppler was 23% (concordance, the percentage of the total number of data points that are in 1 of the 2 quadrants of agreement) after phenylephrine treatment, 69% (concordance) after ephedrine treatment, and 96% (concordance) after whole-body tilting.The pulse contour method of measuring CO, as implemented in the third-generation Vigileo-FloTrac device, accurately tracks changes in CO when preload changes. However, the pulse contour method does not accurately track changes in CO induced with phenylephrine and ephedrine.