Dynamic cerebral autoregulation: should intracranial pressure be taken into account?

Philip Mark Lewis, P Smielewski, J D Pickard, M Czosnyska

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BACKGROUND: Although the inclusion of cerebral perfusion pressure (CPP) is a standard feature in static testing of autoregulation after head injury, controversy surrounds the use of CPP versus arterial blood pressure (ABP) in dynamic tests. The aim of our project was to assess the discrepancies between methods of dynamic autoregulation testing based on CPP or ABP, and study possible differences in their prognostic value. METHOD: Intermittent recordings of intracranial pressure (ICP), ABP and middle cerebral artery blood flow velocity (FV) waveforms were made in 151 anaesthetised and ventilated adult head injured patients as part of their required care. Indices of dynamic autoregulation were calculated as a moving correlation coefficient of 60 samples (total time 3 min) of 6 s mean values of FV and ABP (Mxa) or FV and CPP (Mx). Values of Mx and Mxa were averaged over multiple recordings in each patient and correlated with outcome at 6 months post injury. FINDINGS: Association between Mx and Mxa was moderately strong (r(2) = 0.73). However, limit of 95 accordance between both indices was +/-0.32. Mxa was significantly greater than Mx (0.22 +/- 0.22 versus 0.062 +/- 0.28; p <0.000001). The difference between Mx and Mxa decreased with impairment of autoregulation (r = -0.39; p <0.000001). Mean value of Mx showed a significant difference between dichotomized outcome groups (better autoregulation in patients with favourable than unfavourable outcome), while Mxa did not. CONCLUSIONS: Although relatively similar in a large group of patients, the differences between these two methods of assessment of dynamic autoregulation may be considerable in individual cases. When ICP is monitored, CPP rather than ABP should be included in the calculation of the autoregulatory index.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)549 - 555
Number of pages7
JournalActa Neurochirurgica
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2007

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