Back to Journals » Vascular Health and Risk Management » Volume 5

Alveolar dead space and capnographic variables before and after thrombolysis in patients with acute pulmonary embolism

Authors Moreira M, Terzi RGG, Carvalho, Neto, Corso Pereira M, Paschoal I

Published 24 November 2008 Volume 2009:5 Pages 9—12


Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 3

Download Article [PDF] 

Marcos Mello Moreira1, Renato G G Terzi1, Carlos Heitor N Carvalho2, Antonio Francisco de Oliveira Neto3, Mônica Corso Pereira4, Ilma Aparecida Paschoal4

1Department of Surgery, State University of Campinas, School of Medical Sciences; 2Department of Cardiology, State University of Campinas, School of Medical Sciences; 3Intensive Care Unit of the State University of Campinas, School of Medical Sciences; 4Department of Pulmonology, State University of Campinas, School of Medical Sciences, Campinas, Brazil

Abstract: Pulmonary embolism (PE) is a common condition. The central aim of this study was to describe the use of volumetric capnography (VCap) before and after fibrinolytic treatment of major PE. Lung scintigraphy was used as a base of comparison for the results of this treatment. We describe the cases of two conscious and spontaneously breathing patients (20- and 24-year-old women) with major PE undergoing thrombolysis. Curves of CO2 were obtained by VCap and associated with arterial blood gas analysis and D-dimer. The pattern of VCap was compared with the VCap of health volunteers. Parameters also calculated were: P(a-et)CO2 gradient, alveolar dead space fraction (AVDSf ), late dead space fraction (f Dlate), and slope phase III (Slp III). The VCap results before and after thrombolysis for patients 1 and 2 were, respectively, P(a-et)CO2: 12.6 to 5.8 and 7.9 to 1.6 (mmHg); AVDSf: 0.46 to 0.18 and 0.25 to 0.05; fDlate: 0.46 to 0.21 and 0.24 to 0.04; Slp III: 1.75 to 5.10 and 1.21 to 5.61 (mmHg/L). Lung scintigraphy was used to compare VCap results from the two subjects with VCap results from healthy volunteers and pigs before and after treatment associated with arterial blood gas, D-dimer, and showed satisfactory agreement.

Keywords: pulmonary embolism, capnography, respiratory dead space, thrombolysis, fibrin fibrinogen degradation products/fibrin fragment D

Creative Commons License This work is published and licensed by Dove Medical Press Limited. The full terms of this license are available at and incorporate the Creative Commons Attribution - Non Commercial (unported, v3.0) License. By accessing the work you hereby accept the Terms. Non-commercial uses of the work are permitted without any further permission from Dove Medical Press Limited, provided the work is properly attributed. For permission for commercial use of this work, please see paragraphs 4.2 and 5 of our Terms.

Download Article [PDF]