Evaluation of brain perfusion with high resolution single photon emission tomography in the diagnosis of brain death.

A. Soricelli, P. P. Mainenti, D. Leone, A. Discepolo, M. Romano, A. Varrone, G. Servillo, S. Serio, A. Brunetti, M. Salvatore

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Abstract

Nuclear Medicine studies performed with tomographic acquisition and tracers such as Technetium-99m hexamethyl-propyleneamine oxime (99mTc-HMPAO) are able to assess cerebral blood flow. A case is reported of a patient with a large intracranial tumor, of possible pituitary origin, with a clinical and electroencephalographic suspicion of brain death. The patient had endocrinous-metabolic impairments for a history of impotence, since 18 months, and diabetes insipidus with a urine output of 350 ml/hr in the first 24 hours from the clinical suspicion of brain death. Due to the endocrinous-metabolic impairments, according to Italian law, it was necessary to confirm the diagnosis of brain death by performing a study able to assess cerebral blood flow. A single Photon Emission Tomography (SPET) scan was performed after the intravenous administration of 99mTc-HMPAO using a high resolution, brain dedicated device. No tracer uptake was evident in cerebral, cerebellar and brain stem structures. The cerebral blood flow study by SPET confirmed the diagnosis of brain death and made the organ transplant possible in a short period of time. High resolution SPET studies are useful to confirm the diagnosis of brain death when there are factors that can influence clinical and electroencephalographic signs, reducing time to authorise the organ explant.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)209-212
Number of pages4
JournalMinerva Anestesiologica
Volume62
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Jun 1996

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ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine

Cite this

Soricelli, A., Mainenti, P. P., Leone, D., Discepolo, A., Romano, M., Varrone, A., Servillo, G., Serio, S., Brunetti, A., & Salvatore, M. (1996). Evaluation of brain perfusion with high resolution single photon emission tomography in the diagnosis of brain death. Minerva Anestesiologica, 62(6), 209-212.