Profound Obstructive Hypotension From Prone Positioning Documented by Transesophageal Echocardiography in a Patient With Scoliosis: A Case Report

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Abstract

In a healthy 12-year-old female with scoliosis, prone positioning resulted in pressor-refractory cardiovascular collapse. Resumption of supine position immediately improved hemodynamics. Intraoperative transesophageal echocardiography (TEE) revealed a collapsed left atrium and biventricular failure. Repeat prone positioning resulted in a recurrence of hypotension. However, hemodynamic stabilization was restored and maintained by repositioning chest pads caudally. The patient successfully underwent a 6-hour scoliosis repair without perioperative morbidity. With this case, we aim to: (1) reintroduce awareness of this mechanical obstructive cause of reversible hypotension; (2) highlight the use of intraoperative TEE during prone hemodynamic collapse; and (3) suggest an alternative prone positioning technique if chest compression results in hemodynamic instability.

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