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Association of transcranial Doppler blood flow velocity slow waves with delayed cerebral ischemia in patients suffering from subarachnoid hemorrhage: a retrospective study

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Papaioannou, Vasilios E.  ORCID logo
Budohoski, Karol P. 
Placek, Michal M. 
Czosnyka, Zofia 
Smielewski, Peter 


Abstract: Background: Cerebral vasospasm (VS) and delayed cerebral ischemia (DCI) constitute major complications following subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH). A few studies have examined the relationship between different indices of cerebrovascular dynamics with the occurrence of VS. However, their potential association with the development of DCI remains elusive. In this study, we investigated the pattern of changes of different transcranial Doppler (TCD)-derived indices of cerebrovascular dynamics during vasospasm in patients suffering from subarachnoid hemorrhage, dichotomized by the presence of delayed cerebral ischemia. Methods: A retrospective analysis was performed using recordings from 32 SAH patients, diagnosed with VS. Patients were divided in two groups, depending on development of DCI. Magnitude of slow waves (SWs) of cerebral blood flow velocity (CBFV) was measured. Cerebral autoregulation was estimated using the moving correlation coefficient Mxa. Cerebral arterial time constant (tau) was expressed as the product of resistance and compliance. Complexity of CBFV was estimated through measurement of sample entropy (SampEn). Results: In the whole population (N = 32), magnitude of SWs of ipsilateral to VS side CBFV was higher during vasospasm (4.15 ± 1.55 vs before: 2.86 ± 1.21 cm/s, p < 0.001). Ipsilateral SWs of CBFV before VS had higher magnitude in DCI group (N = 19, p < 0.001) and were strongly predictive of DCI, with area under the curve (AUC) = 0.745 (p = 0.02). Vasospasm caused a non-significant shortening of ipsilateral values of tau and increase in SampEn in all patients related to pre-VS measurements, as well as an insignificant increase of Mxa in DCI related to non-DCI group (N = 13). Conclusions: In patients suffering from subarachnoid hemorrhage, TCD-detected VS was associated with higher ipsilateral CBFV SWs, related to pre-VS measurements. Higher CBFV SWs before VS were significantly predictive of delayed cerebral ischemia.



Research Articles, Cerebral blood flow, Delayed cerebral ischemia, Subarachnoid hemorrhage, Slow waves, Time constant, Transcranial Doppler, Vasospasm

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Intensive Care Medicine Experimental

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Springer International Publishing