Continuous monitoring of right ventricular volume changes using a conductance catheter in the rabbit

P. L. Solda, P. Pantaleo, S. Perlini, A. Calciati, G. Finardi, M. R. Pinsky, L. Bernardi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


To assess the reliability of conductance (G) catheter for evaluating right ventricular (RV) volume changes, a miniature (3.5F) six-electrode catheter was developed and tested in 11 New Zealand rabbit hearts. In five animals the heart was excised; in six it was left in the thorax RV conductance was recorded while the RV was filled with blood in 0.25-ml steps at different left ventricular (LV) volumes. Linear correlation of measured conductance vs. reference volumes was computed. RV conductance was highly correlated with reference volume [correlation coefficient (r) ranging from 0.991 to 0.999]. Slope of regression lines was not significantly affected by LV volume variations in 1-ml steps or by acute conductance changes of structures surrounding the heart, whereas the intercept was affected only by the 0- to 1-ml LV volume change. In four rabbits, RV conductance changes during a cardiac cycle [stroke volume- (SV) G] were compared in vivo with electromagnetic flow probe-derived estimates of SV (SVem) as stroke volume was varied by graded inferior vena caval occlusion. SV-G correlated well with SVem (r ranging from 0.92 to 0.96). This correlation persisted after the thorax was filled with saline; however, significant differences were found in individual slopes (P <0.001). These results show that the conductance catheter has a potential to reliably monitor in vivo relative RV volume changes in small-animal hearts.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1770-1775
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Applied Physiology
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1992


  • animal model
  • electrical impedance
  • hemodynamics
  • invasive monitoring
  • ventricular function

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology
  • Physiology
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation


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