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Open Access Research article

Effects of paracentesis on hemodynamic parameters and respiratory function in critically ill patients

Veit Phillip1, Bernd Saugel1, Christina Ernesti1, Alexander Hapfelmeier2, Caroline Schultheiß1, Philipp Thies1, Ulrich Mayr1, Roland M Schmid1 and Wolfgang Huber1*

Author Affiliations

1 II. Medizinische Klinik und Poliklinik, Klinikum rechts der Isar der Technischen Universität München, Ismaninger Straße 22, 81675 München, Germany

2 Institut für Medizinische Statistik und Epidemiologie, Klinikum rechts der Isar der Technischen Universität München, Ismaninger Straße 22, 81675 München, Germany

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BMC Gastroenterology 2014, 14:18  doi:10.1186/1471-230X-14-18

Published: 27 January 2014

Abstract

Background

Ascites is a major and common complication of liver cirrhosis. Large or refractory ascites frequently necessitates paracentesis. The aim of our study was to investigate the effects of paracentesis on hemodynamic and respiratory parameters in critically ill patients.

Methods

Observational study comparing hemodynamic and respiratory parameters before and after paracentesis in 50 critically ill patients with advanced hemodynamic monitoring. 28/50 (56%) required mechanical ventilation.

Descriptive statistics are presented as mean ± standard deviation for normally distributed data and median, range, and interquartile range (IQR) for non-normally distributed data. Comparisons of hemodynamic and respiratory parameters before and after paracentesis were performed by Wilcoxon signed-rank tests. Bivariate relations were assessed by Spearman’s correlation coefficient and univariate regression analyses.

Results

Median amount of ascites removed was 5.99 L (IQR, 3.33-7.68 L). There were no statistically significant changes in hemodynamic parameters except a decrease in mean arterial pressure (-7 mm Hg; p = 0.041) and in systemic vascular resistance index (-116 dyne·sec/cm5/m2; p = 0.016) when measured 2 hours after paracentesis. In all patients, oxygenation ratio (PaO2/FiO2; median, 220 mmHg; IQR, 161–329 mmHg) increased significantly when measured immediately (+58 mmHg; p = 0.001), 2 hours (+9 mmHg; p = 0.004), and 6 hours (+6 mmHg); p = 0.050) after paracentesis. In mechanically ventilated patients, lung injury score (cumulative points without x-ray; median, 6; IQR, 4–7) significantly improved immediately (5; IQR, 4–6; p < 0.001), 2 hours (5; IQR, 4–7; p = 0.003), and 6 hours (6; IQR 4–6; p = 0.012) after paracentesis.

Conclusion

Paracentesis in critically ill patients is safe regarding circulatory function and is related to immediate and sustained improvement of respiratory function.

Keywords:
Ascites; Dynamic respiratory system compliance; Hemodynamics; Transpulmonary thermodilution; Hemodynamic monitoring