Intensive Care Medicine

, Volume 19, Issue 6, pp 353–355 | Cite as

Intensive use of general ultrasound in the intensive care unit

Prospective study of 150 consecutive patients
  • D. Lichtenstein
  • O. Axler
Brief Reports

Abstract

Objective

To assess the impact of systematic ultrasound (US) examination in patients admitted to the ICU

Design

An observational study of 150 consecutive patients

Setting

A medical ICU of a University-affiliated hospital

Patients

All consecutively admitted patients were examined, but patients discharged within <48 h were excluded from the analysis

Interventions

A systematic examination of the abdomen, pleural space, cervical and femoral vein, was performed at the bedside by the same investigator

Measurements

Results of US examinations were compared to findings from CT-scan, surgery, endoscopic procedures, autopsy, or other diagnostic tests. The impact of U.S. findings on immediate patients management was evaluatedm

Results

In 33 of 150 patients (22%), U.S. findings influenced the diagnosis, work up of the patients, and had a direct impact on the therapeutic plan. In 30/33 cases, confirmation of diagnosis was obtained by another diagnostic and/or therapeutic procedure

Conclusions

Routine US examination may alter therapeutic plans in up to 1/4 of critically ill patients admitted to the ICU. US examination should be liberally performed on such patients.

Key words

Ultrasonography Intensive care 

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  • D. Lichtenstein
    • 1
  • O. Axler
    • 1
  1. 1.Medical Intensive Care UnitHôpital Ambroise-ParéBoulogneFrance

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