Background: Left ventricular stroke area by transoesophageal echocardiographic automated border detection has been shown to be strongly correlated to left ventricular stroke volume. Respiratory variations in left ventricular stroke volume or its surrogates are good predictors of fluid responsiveness in mechanically ventilated patients. We hypothesised that respiratory variations in left ventricular stroke area (DeltaSA) can predict fluid responsiveness.
Methods: Eighteen mechanically ventilated patients undergoing coronary artery bypass grafting were studied immediately after induction of anaesthesia. Stroke area was measured on a beat-to-beat basis using transoesophageal echocardiographic automated border detection. Haemodynamic and echocardiographic data were measured at baseline and after volume expansion induced by a passive leg raising manoeuvre. Responders to passive leg raising manoeuvre were defined as patients presenting a more than 15% increase in cardiac output.
Results: Cardiac output increased significantly in response to volume expansion induced by passive leg raising (from 2.16 +/- 0.79 litres per minute to 2.78 +/- 1.08 litres per minute; p < 0.01). DeltaSA decreased significantly in response to volume expansion (from 17% +/- 7% to 8% +/- 6%; p < 0.01). DeltaSA was higher in responders than in non-responders (20% +/- 5% versus 10% +/- 5%; p < 0.01). A cutoff DeltaSA value of 16% allowed fluid responsiveness prediction with a sensitivity of 92% and a specificity of 83%. DeltaSA at baseline was related to the percentage increase in cardiac output in response to volume expansion (r = 0.53, p < 0.01).
Conclusion: DeltaSA by transoesophageal echocardiographic automated border detection is sensitive to changes in preload, can predict fluid responsiveness, and can quantify the effects of volume expansion on cardiac output. It has potential clinical applications.