Intracranial Monitoring after Severe Traumatic Brain Injury
Intracranial monitoring after severe traumatic brain injury offers the possibility for early detection and amelioration of physiological insults. In this thesis, I explore cerebral insults due raised intracranial pressure, decreased cerebral perfusion pressure and impaired cerebral pressure reactivity after traumatic brain injury. In chapter 2, the importance of intracranial pressure, cerebral perfusion pressure and pressure reactivity in regulating the cerebral circulation is elucidated along with a summary of the existing evidence supporting intracranial monitoring in traumatic brain injury. In chapter 4, intracranial pressure, cerebral perfusion pressure, and pressure reactivity insults are demonstrated to be common, prognostically important, and responsive to long-term changes in management policies. Further, while these insults often occur independently, coexisting insults portend worse prognosis. In chapter 5, I examine possible imaging antecedents of raised intracranial pressure and demonstrate that initial subarachnoid haemorrhage is associated with the subsequent development of elevated intracranial pressure. In addition, elevated glucose during the intensive care stay is associated with worse pressure reactivity. Cortical blood flow and brain tissue oxygenation are demonstrated to be sensitive to increases in intracranial pressure in chapter 6. In chapter 7, a method is proposed to estimate the cerebral perfusion pressure limits of reactivity in real-time, which may allow for more nuanced intensive care treatment. Finally, I explore a recently developed visualisation technique for intracranial physiological insults and apply it to the cerebral perfusion pressure limits of reactivity. Taken together, this thesis outlines the scope, risk factors and consequences of intracranial insults after severe traumatic brain injury. Novel signal processing applications are presented that may serve to facilitate a physiological, personalised and precision approach to patient therapy.