Assessing Endothelial Responsiveness after Cardiopulmonary Bypass: Insights on Different Perfusion Modalities

Fabio Sangalli, Marco Guazzi, Silvia Senni, Wilma Sala, Rosa Caruso, Maria Cristina Costa, Francesco Formica, Leonello Avalli, Roberto Fumagalli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective Cardiopulmonary bypass (CPB) exerts several deleterious effects on inflammatory pathways. Most of these can be related to an endothelial insult leading to endothelial dysfunction. To date, the degree of endothelial damage only has been evaluated on a cellular and molecular level, but no studies exist looking at the functional effects of CPB on the endothelium. Design Previous studies hypothesized a negative effect of continuous flow as opposed to the physiologic pulsatile flow. The aim of the present retrospective study was to investigate how different perfusion modalities during CPB (ie, continuous v pulsatile flow) or its avoidance differently impact endothelial function. Setting Cardiovascular operating room and intensive care unit of a large tertiary University Hospital in Monza, Italy. Participants Flow-mediated dilatation (FMD) of the brachial artery was assessed in 29 patients undergoing elective myocardial revascularization. Ten patients receiving continuous-flow CPB, 10 receiving pulsatile-flow CPB, and 9 scheduled for beating-heart revascularization were studied. Interventions Patients were studied at baseline (after induction of general anesthesia), after CPB upon intensive care unit (ICU) admission after surgery, and on the first postoperative day before discharge from the ICU (on average, 24 hours after CPB discontinuation). Measurements and Main Results The continuous-flow CPB group demonstrated a significant reduction in FMD after CPB, (12.8%±9.7% v 1.6%±1.5%, p

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)912-916
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Cardiothoracic and Vascular Anesthesia
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2015


  • continuous flow
  • endothelial function
  • flow-mediated dilatation
  • Key Words cardiopulmonary bypass
  • pulsatile flow

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine


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