Comparison of the WarmCloud and Bair Hugger Warming Devices for the Prevention of Intraoperative Hypothermia in Patients Undergoing Orthotopic Liver Transplantation: A Randomized Clinical Trial

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The avoidance of hypothermia is vital during prolonged and open surgery to improve patient outcomes. Hypothermia is particularly common during orthotopic liver transplantation (OLT) and associated with undesirable physiological effects that can adversely impact on perioperative morbidity. The KanMed WarmCloud (Bromma, Sweden) is a revolutionary, closed-loop, warm-air heating mattress developed to maintain normothermia and prevent pressure sores during major surgery. The clinical effectiveness of the WarmCloud device during OLT is unknown. Therefore, we conducted a randomized controlled trial to determine whether the WarmCloud device reduces hypothermia and prevents pressure injuries compared with the Bair Hugger underbody warming device.


Patients were randomly allocated to receive either the WarmCloud or Bair Hugger warming device. Both groups also received other routine standardized multimodal thermoregulatory strategies. Temperatures were recorded by nasopharyngeal temperature probe at set time points during surgery. The primary endpoint was nasopharyngeal temperature recorded 5 minutes before reperfusion. Secondary endpoints included changes in temperature over the predefined intraoperative time points, number of patients whose nadir temperature was below 35.5°C and the development of pressure injuries during surgery.


Twenty-six patients were recruited with 13 patients randomized to each group. One patient from the WarmCloud group was excluded because of a protocol violation. Baseline characteristics were similar. The mean (standard deviation) temperature before reperfusion was 36.0°C (0.7) in the WarmCloud group versus 36.3°C (0.6) in the Bairhugger group (P = 0.25). There were no statistical differences between the groups for any of the secondary endpoints.


When combined with standardized multimodal thermoregulatory strategies, the WarmCloud device does not reduce hypothermia compared with the Bair Hugger device in patients undergoing OLT.

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