BACKGROUND: Currently, quantitative measurement of global cerebral blood flow (CBF) at bedside is not widely performed. The aim of the present study was to evaluate a newly developed method for bedside measurement of CBF based on thermodilution in a clinical setting.
METHODS: The investigation was performed in 14 anesthetized patients before coronary bypass surgery. CBF was altered by hypocapnia, normocapnia, and hypercapnia. CBF was measured simultaneously by the Kety-Schmidt inert-gas technique with argon and a newly developed transcerebral double-indicator dilution technique (TCID). For TCID, bolus injections of ice-cold indocyanine green were performed via a central venous line, and the resulting thermo-dye dilution curves were recorded simultaneously in the aorta and the jugular bulb using combined fiberoptic thermistor catheters. CBF was calculated from the mean transit times of the indicators through the brain.
RESULTS: Both methods of measurement of CBF indicate a decrease during hypocapnia and an increase during hypercapnia, whereas cerebral metabolic rate remained unchanged. Bias between CBF(TCID) and CBFargon was -7.1+/-2.2 (SEM) ml x min(-1) x 100 g(-1); precision (+/- 2 x SD of differences) between methods was 26.6 ml x min(-1) x 100 g(-1).
CONCLUSIONS: In the clinical setting, TCID was feasible and less time-consuming than alternative methods. The authors conclude that TCID is an alternative method to measure global CBF at bedside and offers a new opportunity to monitor cerebral perfusion of patients.