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  • Meeting abstract
  • Open Access

The relationship between data of gastric tonometry by determination of polymorphonuclear leukocytes (PMNs, i.e., myeloperoxidase activity) and gut mucosal hypoperfusion in elective cardiac surgical patients

  • 1,
  • 1,
  • 1 and
  • 1
Critical Care20004 (Suppl 1) :P156

  • Published:


  • Polymorphonuclear Leukocyte
  • Pulmonary Artery Catheter
  • Tissue Hypoxia
  • Myeloperoxidase Activity
  • Oxygenation Monitoring

Full text


The expression of polymorphonuclear leukocytes (PMNs) as a result of local and systemic inflammation in patients undergoing cardiac surgery by using the CPB is considered to be an important cofactor in tissue hypoxia and the pathogenesis of multiple organ failure [1]. Therefore, an early detection of tissue hypoxia is very useful for the prevention of MOFS. It has been shown that gastric tonometry improves clinical applicability of gut mucosal oxygenation monitoring [2]. In a previous paper the correlation between gastric tonometry and PMNs was warranted [3]. This was done in the following study.


Following institutional approval, 66 adult male patients undergoing elective cardiac surgery using cardiopulmonary bypass were studied. They were monitored with the Tonocap in addition to standard monitoring (ECG, CVP, arterial pressure) and the pulmonary artery catheter. The PiCO2 was measured every 15 min after admission to the ICU. In addition, documentation of CO2-gap, arterial and pulmonary arterial hemodynamics, arterial and mixed-venous blood gas analyses and lactate followed four times until extubation. The patients were shifted into three groups by using the terciles of preoperative expression of the PMNs (group I <1451 μg/l; group II ≤ 2487 μg/l; group III >2487 μg/l).


The course of CO2-gap was parallel to the PMNs. Both parameters increased after admission to the ICU. Using the Wilcoxon-Wilcox test the increase in CO2-gap and PMNs was significant in all groups. These differences did not occur in the parameters obtained from blood gas analyses (BE, lactate, mixed venous saturation) and in hemodynamic parameters.


Gastric tonometry is superior to other techniques in detecting dysfunctions of gut oxygenation if PMNs are used as a biochemical indicator. Questions of therapeutic interventions in increasing CO2-gaps and PMNs need further investigations.

Authors’ Affiliations

Department of Anesthesiology, Medical University of Luebeck, Ratzeburger Allee 160, 23538 Luebeck, Germany


  1. J Thorac Cardiovasc Surg 1983, 86: 845-857.Google Scholar
  2. Intensive Care Medicine 1997, 23: 276-281. 10.1007/s001340050328Google Scholar
  3. Critical Care Medicine 1999, 27: 2038-2039. 10.1097/00003246-199909000-00061Google Scholar


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