, Volume 2, Issue 1, pp 1-12
Date: 18 May 2010

Focused examination of cerebral blood flow in peri-resuscitation: a new advanced life support compliant concept—an extension of the focused echocardiography evaluation in life support examination

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Abstract

Aim

To introduce a new concept of the extension of focused echocardiography evaluation in life support (FEEL) with advanced life support (ALS)-compliant duplex sonography of the extracranial internal carotid artery (ICA) blood flow velocity for monitoring of cerebral blood circulation during peri-resuscitation.

Concept and results

With respect to pulseless electrical activity states, the question of adequate cerebral blood flow (CBF) cannot be answered by echocardiography alone. Pulse checks are unreliable. To build up a concept for assessing CBF, we analyzed duplex sonography workflow in three adults on the intensive care unit (postoperative, cardiogenic shock, cardiac standstill), and in simulated procedures. We decided to use duplex flow velocity of the ICA, for it is an accepted measurement for estimating CBF and it seems to be easy to obtain a window and interpretation during peri-resuscitation. The presence of an arterial blood flow pattern and an end-diastolic flow velocity of more than 20 cm/s, arbitrarily set, is considered to indicate sufficient CBF. The method of ICA flow velocity analysis during peri-resuscitation was tentatively added to the FEEL concept and is described with algorithm, workflow and three cases. This method may give an assist to answer the question, if CBF is sufficient, when myocardial wall motion is detectable in peri-resuscitation care.

Conclusion

This new concept of an ALS-conformed analysis of ICA blood flow velocity by duplex sonography may provide a simple, fast applicable and inexpensive method to qualitatively assess CBF in the peri-resuscitation setting.