Time course of haemodynamic, respiratory and inflammatory disturbances induced by experimental acute pulmonary polystyrene microembolism

European Journal of Anaesthesiology
Daniel T DolciLuciano C P Azevedo


The time course of cardiopulmonary alterations after pulmonary embolism has not been clearly demonstrated and nor has the role of systemic inflammation on the pathogenesis of the disease. This study aimed to evaluate over 12 h the effects of pulmonary embolism caused by polystyrene microspheres on the haemodynamics, lung mechanics and gas exchange and on interleukin-6 production. Ten large white pigs (weight 35-42 kg) had arterial and pulmonary catheters inserted and pulmonary embolism was induced in five pigs by injection of polystyrene microspheres (diameter approximately 300 micromol l(-1)) until a value of pulmonary mean arterial pressure of twice the baseline was obtained. Five other animals received only saline. Haemodynamic and respiratory data and pressure-volume curves of the respiratory system were collected. A bronchoscopy was performed before and 12 h after embolism, when the animals were euthanized. The embolism group developed hypoxaemia that was not corrected with high oxygen fractions, as well as higher values of dead space, airway resistance and lower respiratory compliance levels. Acute haemodynamic alterations included pulmonary arterial hypertension with preserved systemic arterial pressure and cardiac index...Continue Reading


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