[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Radical resection of primary or solitary secondary malignant sternal tumours is indicated in patients without metastases. Sternal reconstruction may be indicated in large defects to prevent pulmonary complications, to achieve protection of intra-thoracic organs and to obtain a good aesthetic result. In this article, a modified surgical technique is described to fill and reconstruct large defects after radical resection of a primary or secondary malignant sternal tumour. The technique makes use of a methyl methacrylate composite within two layers of polypropylene mesh enforced by steel wires through the sternal ends of the defect enhancing stability. This modified technique can be easily applied, making curative broad radical resections of the sternum feasible.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Recently we coined the term supercutaneous plating using a locking compression plate (LCP) as an external fixator. The use of this technique in peri-articular areas is facilitated by the development of anatomical plates with various screw sizes. The purpose of this report is to describe our results using the metaphyseal locking plate (LCP) as an external fixator in the treatment of infected post-traumatic problems of the distal tibia.
Between August 2008 and January 2012 a total of seven patients underwent external plating ("supercutaneous plating") of the distal tibia using a metaphyseal locking plate. Average age was 43 years (range 20-79). Six out of seven patients had a documented infection at the time of external plate application. All patients in this cohort were followed prospectively at regular intervals by the senior author (PK).
The plate was in situ for an average of 17.5 weeks (range 6-60). There were no clinically significant pin site infections. In four patients the plate was kept in place until there was complete consolidation. In three patients the external plate was exchanged for formal internal fixation once the infection had subsided. At the latest follow-up (average 12.8 months, range 4-31), all patients were fully weight bearing with a fully healed tibia. All patients were infection-free with well-healed wounds.
Infection of the distal tibia after treatment of traumatic and post-traumatic problems is a challenging problem. It is common practice that after initial debridement and hardware removal, temporary bony stabilisation is provided by external fixation. Most external frames for the lower leg are bulky and cumbersome, causing significant problems for the patient. To circumvent these issues, we have successfully used an anatomically-contoured metaphyseal locking compression plate as external fixator in a series of seven patients for acute or post-traumatic problems of the tibia.
International Orthopaedics 06/2012; 36(9):1923-7. DOI:10.1007/s00264-012-1585-7 · 2.11 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Restrictive mitral annuloplasty (RMA) is increasingly applied to treat functional mitral regurgitation in heart failure patients. Previous studies indicated beneficial clinical effects with low recurrence rates. However, the underlying pathophysiology is complex and outcome in terms of left ventricular function is not well known. We investigated chronic effects of RMA on ventricular function in relation to clinical outcome.
Heart failure patients (n = 11) with severe mitral regurgitation scheduled for RMA were analyzed at baseline (presurgery) and midterm follow-up by invasive pressure-volume loops, using conductance catheters. Clinical performance was evaluated by New York Heart Association class, quality-of-life-score, and 6-minute hall-walk-test.
All patients were alive without recurrence of mitral regurgitation at follow-up (9.4 ± 4.1 months). Clinical parameters improved significantly (all p < 0.05). Global cardiac function, assessed by cardiac output, stroke volume, and stroke work did not change after RMA. Reverse remodeling was demonstrated by decreased end-systolic and end-diastolic volumes (16% and 11%, both p < 0.001). Systolic function improved, evidenced by increased ejection fraction (0.32 ± 0.05 to 0.36 ± 0.07, p = 0.001) and leftward shift of the end-systolic pressure-volume relation (ESV(100): 116 ± 43 to 74 ± 26 mL, p < 0.001). Diastolic function, however, demonstrated impairment by increased tau (69 ± 13 to 80 ± 14 ms, p < 0.001) and stiffness constant (0.022 ± 0.022 to 0.031 ± 0.028 mL(-1), p = 0.001).
Restrictive mitral annuloplasty significantly improved clinical status without recurrence of mitral regurgitation at midterm follow-up in patients with heart failure. Hemodynamic analyses demonstrated significant reverse remodeling with unchanged global function and improved systolic function, but some signs of diastolic impairment. Overall, RMA appears an appropriate therapy for patients with dilated cardiomyopathy and functional mitral regurgitation.
The Annals of thoracic surgery 12/2010; 90(6):1913-20. DOI:10.1016/j.athoracsur.2010.08.010 · 3.85 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Previous studies demonstrated beneficial short-term effects of surgical ventricular restoration on mechanical dyssynchrony and left ventricular function and improved midterm and long-term clinical parameters. However, long-term effects on systolic and diastolic left ventricular function are still largely unknown.
We studied 9 patients with ischemic dilated cardiomyopathy who underwent surgical ventricular restoration with additional restrictive mitral annuloplasty and/or coronary artery bypass grafting. Invasive hemodynamic measurements by conductance catheter (pressure-volume loops) were obtained before and 6 months after surgery. In addition, New York Heart Association classification, quality-of-life score, and 6-minute hall-walk test were assessed.
At 6 months' follow-up, all patients were alive and clinically in improved condition: New York Heart Association class from 3.3 ± 0.5 to 1.4 ± 0.7, quality-of-life score from 46 ± 22 to 15 ± 15, and 6-minute hall-walk test from 302 ± 123 to 444 ± 78 m (all P < .01). Hemodynamic data showed improved cardiac output (4.8 ± 1.4 to 5.6 ± 1.1 L/min), stroke work (6.5 ± 1.9 to 7.1 ± 1.4 mm Hg · L; P = .05), and left ventricular ejection fraction (36% ± 10% to 46% ± 10%; P < .001). Left ventricular surgical remodeling was sustained at 6 months: end-diastolic volume decreased from 246 ± 70 to 180 ± 48 mL and end-systolic volume from 173 ± 77 to 103 ± 40 mL (both P < .001). Left ventricular dyssynchrony decreased from 29% ± 6% to 26% ± 3% (P < .001) and ineffective internal flow fraction decreased from 58% ± 30% to 42% ± 18% (P < .005). Early relaxation (Tau, minimal rate of pressure change) was unchanged, but diastolic stiffness constant increased from 0.012 ± 0.003 to 0.023 ± 0.007 mL(-1) (P < .001).
Surgical ventricular restoration with additional restrictive mitral annuloplasty and/or coronary artery bypass grafting leads to sustained left ventricular volume reduction at 6 months' follow-up. We observed improved systolic function and unchanged early diastolic function but impaired passive diastolic properties. Clinical improvement, supported by decreased New York Heart Association class, improved quality-of-life score, and improved 6-minute hall-walk test may be related to improved systolic function, reduced mechanical dyssynchrony, and reduced wall stress.
The Journal of thoracic and cardiovascular surgery 04/2010; 140(6):1338-44. DOI:10.1016/j.jtcvs.2010.01.029 · 4.17 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Heart failure patients are increasingly subjected to surgery. Left ventricular (LV) function is generally assessed in awake patients, but intra-operative LV function is not well studied.
To investigate the relation between LV function indices obtained in the catheterization laboratory and those obtained intra-operatively.
We enrolled 11 patients with heart failure (NYHA III-IV) scheduled for surgical interventions. LV function was assessed by pressure-volume loops (conductance catheter) during diagnostic catheterizations and intra-operatively under anaesthetized conditions.
Compared to awake conditions, cardiac output was unchanged intra-operatively but ejection fraction was significantly reduced (-16%) due to increased end-diastolic volume (+13%). Systolic and diastolic LV pressure and afterload (E(A)) dropped significantly (-32%, -22%, -35%, respectively). LV systolic function assessed by dP/dt(MAX) and the end-systolic pressure-volume relation (E(ES)) was significantly reduced (-34%, -35%). LV diastolic stiffness was reduced (-44%). Ventricular-arterial coupling (E(A)/E(ES)) was maintained.
Intra-operative cardiac output was unchanged compared to awake conditions due to a balance between reduced systolic and improved diastolic function. Ventricular-arterial coupling was maintained by a reduced afterload. Presumably, systolic function and afterload were reduced by anaesthesia, whereas diastolic function improved after pericardectomy. These findings provide insight into the combined effects of anaesthesia, thoracotomy and pericardectomy, and help to interpret LV function measurements in intra-operative conditions.
European Journal of Heart Failure 06/2008; 10(5):467-74. DOI:10.1016/j.ejheart.2008.03.012 · 6.53 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Treatment of heart failure by advanced surgical procedures such as ventricular restoration (SVR) and restrictive mitral annuloplasty (RMA) is increasingly applied. We studied clinical efficacy of heart failure surgery in patients with severe heart failure.
Thirty-three patients (New York Heart Association (NYHA) class III/IV, left ventricular ejection fraction < or =35%) were included. Patients with moderate to severe mitral regurgitation underwent RMA (85%) and patients with anteroseptal aneurysm underwent SVR (52%). A combined procedure was performed in 12 patients, and additional coronary artery bypass grafting in 27 patients. Clinical and echocardiographic parameters were assessed at baseline and 6 months after surgery. Operative mortality was 3% (n = 1), in-hospital mortality was 9% (n = 3), and there was no late mortality. All clinical parameters were significantly improved at 6 months' follow-up (P < .001); NYHA class improved from 3.4 +/- 0.5 to 1.5 +/- 0.5, Quality-of-life score improved from 44 +/- 22 to 16 +/- 12, and 6-minute walking distance increased from 248 +/- 134 m to 422 +/- 113 m. Left ventricular end-diastolic volume decreased from 107 +/- 32 to 80 +/- 20 mL/m(2) (P < .001) and end-systolic volume decreased from 78 +/- 32 to 53 +/- 15 mL/m(2) (P < .001), whereas ejection fraction improved from 29 +/- 9 to 35 +/- 7% (P < .01).
Surgical treatment of severe heart failure by SVR or RMA was associated with 12% mortality at 6 months. Surviving patients showed highly significant functional and clinical improvements.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Surgical ventricular restoration is increasingly applied in patients with ischemic dilated cardiomyopathy. Previous studies show promising results with regard to survival and clinical outcome. However, a comprehensive midterm analysis of this approach on left ventricular (LV) and right ventricular function is not yet available. We investigated biventricular function and clinical status at 6-month follow-up.
We investigated the effects of surgical ventricular restoration on clinical variables, LV volume, right ventricular reverse remodeling, LV dyssynchrony, tricuspid regurgitation, and pulmonary artery pressure in 21 patients with ischemic dilated cardiomyopathy (New York Heart Association class III or IV) who underwent surgical ventricular restoration and coronary artery bypass grafting. Additional surgery included mitral annuloplasty (n = 14) and tricuspid valve annuloplasty (n = 8). Clinical variables (New York Heart Association class, quality-of-life questionnaire, 6-minute hall-walk test) and echocardiographic variables were assessed at baseline and at 6 months.
At 6-month follow-up, all clinical variables were significantly improved. Left ventricular ejection fraction improved from 0.27 +/- 0.10 to 0.36 +/- 0.11 (p < 0.01), LV end-diastolic volume decreased from 248 +/- 78 mL to 152 +/- 50 mL (p < 0.001), and LV end-systolic volume decreased from 186 +/- 77 mL to 101 +/- 50 mL (p < 0.001). Left ventricular dyssynchrony decreased from 61 +/- 41 ms to 12 +/- 12 ms (p < 0.001). Right ventricular annular diameter decreased from 30 +/- 7 mm to 27 +/- 6 mm, right ventricular short-axis from 30 +/- 9 mm to 27 +/- 7 mm, and right ventricular long-axis from 90 +/- 7 mm to 79 +/- 10 mm (all p < 0.05). Finally, significant reductions in severity of tricuspid regurgitation (from 1.3 +/- 1.1 to 0.9 +/- 0.6; p = 0.001) and pulmonary artery pressure (42 +/- 11 mm Hg to 28 +/- 10 mm Hg; p = 0.015) were observed.
Surgical ventricular restoration resulted in improvement of clinical variables, significant LV volume reduction, and reduced LV dyssynchrony at 6-month follow-up. In addition, right ventricular reverse remodeling was noted with reductions in tricuspid regurgitation and pulmonary artery pressure.
The Annals of thoracic surgery 11/2006; 82(5):1721-7. DOI:10.1016/j.athoracsur.2006.05.050 · 3.85 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Surgical ventricular restoration aims at improving cardiac function by normalization of left ventricular shape and size. Recent studies indicate that surgical ventricular restoration is highly effective with an excellent 5-year outcome in patients with ischemic dilated cardiomyopathy. We used pressure-volume analysis to investigate acute changes in systolic and diastolic left ventricular function, mechanical dyssynchrony and efficiency, and wall stress.
In 3 patient groups (total, n = 33), pressure-volume loops were measured by conductance catheter before and after surgery. The main study group consisted of 10 patients with ischemic dilated cardiomyopathy (New York Heart Association class III/IV, left ventricular ejection fraction <30%) who had surgical ventricular restoration and coronary artery bypass grafting. In this group, 7 patients had additional restrictive mitral annuloplasty. To assess potential confounding effects of restrictive mitral annuloplasty and cardiopulmonary bypass, we included a group of 10 patients (New York Heart Association class III/IV, left ventricular ejection fraction <30%) who had isolated restrictive mitral annuloplasty and a group of 13 patients with preserved left ventricular function who had isolated coronary artery bypass grafting.
After surgical ventricular restoration, end-diastolic and end-systolic volumes were reduced from 211 +/- 54 to 169 +/- 34 mL (P = .03) and from 147 +/- 41 to 110 +/- 59 mL (P = .04), respectively. Left ventricular ejection fraction (from 27% +/- 7% to 37% +/- 13%, P = .04) and end-systolic elastance (from 1.12 +/- 0.71 to 1.57 +/- 0.63 mm Hg/mL, P = .03) improved. Peak wall stress (from 358 +/- 108 to 244 +/- 79 mm Hg, P < .01) and mechanical dyssynchrony (from 26% +/- 4% to 19% +/- 6%, P < .01) were reduced, whereas mechanical efficiency improved (from 0.34 +/- 13 to 0.49 +/- 0.14, P = .03). End-diastolic pressure increased (from 13 +/- 6 to 20 +/- 5 mm Hg, P < .01), whereas the diastolic chamber stiffness constant tended to be increased (from 0.021 +/- 0.009 to 0.037 +/- 0.021 mL(-1), NS).
Surgical ventricular restoration achieves normalization of left ventricular volumes and improves systolic function and mechanical efficiency by reducing left ventricular wall stress and mechanical dyssynchrony.
The Journal of thoracic and cardiovascular surgery 10/2006; 132(3):610-20. DOI:10.1016/j.jtcvs.2005.12.016 · 4.17 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Acute hemodynamic effects of cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT) were reported previously, but detailed invasive studies showing hemodynamic consequences of long-term CRT are not available.
We studied 22 patients scheduled for implantation of a CRT device based on conventional criteria (New York Heart Association class III or IV, left ventricular [LV] ejection fraction <35%, left bundle-branch block, and QRS duration >120 ms). During diagnostic catheterization before CRT, we acquired pressure-volume loops using conductance catheters during atrial pacing at 80, 100, 120, and 140 bpm. Studies were repeated during biventricular pacing at the same heart rates after 6 months of CRT. Our data show a significant clinical benefit of CRT (New York Heart Association class change from 3.1+/-0.5 to 2.1+/-0.8; quality-of-life score change from 44+/-12 to 31+/-16; and 6-minute hall-walk distance increased from 260+/-149 to 396+/-129 m; all P<0.001), improved LV ejection fraction (from 29+/-10% to 40+/-13%, P<0.01), decreased end-diastolic pressure (from 18+/-8 to 13+/-6 mm Hg, P<0.05), and reverse remodeling (end-diastolic volume decreased from 257+/-67 to 205+/-54 mL, P<0.01). Previously reported acute improvements in LV function remained present at 6 months: dP/dtmax increased 18%, -dP/dtmin increased 13%, and stroke work increased 34% (all P<0.01). Effects of increased heart rate were improved toward more physiological responses for LV ejection fraction, cardiac output, and dP/dtmax. Moreover, our study showed improved ventricular-arterial coupling (69% increase, P<0.01) and improved mechanical efficiency (44% increase, P<0.01).
Hemodynamic improvements with CRT, previously shown in acute invasive studies, are maintained chronically. In addition, ventricular-arterial coupling, mechanical efficiency, and chronotropic responses are improved after 6 months of CRT. These findings may help to explain the improved functional status and exercise tolerance in patients treated with CRT.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Recent studies show beneficial long-term effects of restrictive mitral annuloplasty in patients with end-stage heart failure. However, concerns are raised about possible adverse effects on early postoperative systolic and diastolic function, which might limit application of this approach in patients with heart failure. Therefore we evaluated the acute effects of restrictive mitral annuloplasty on left ventricular function by using load-independent pressure-volume relations.
In 23 patients (heart failure, n = 10; control, n = 13) we determined left ventricular systolic and diastolic function before and after surgical intervention by means of pressure-volume analysis with a conductance catheter. All patients with heart failure underwent stringent restrictive mitral annuloplasty (2 sizes smaller than the measured size), and 4 received additional coronary artery bypass grafting. Transesophageal echocardiography was used for evaluation of valve repair. Patients with preserved left ventricular function who underwent isolated coronary artery bypass grafting served as control subjects.
Restrictive mitral annuloplasty (ring size, 25 +/- 1) restored leaflet coaptation (8.0 +/- 0.2 mm) with normal pressure gradients (2.9 +/- 1.8 mm Hg). Restrictive mitral annuloplasty did not change cardiac output (5.0 +/- 1.8 to 5.3 +/- 0.9 L/min, P = .516), left ventricular ejection fraction (29% +/- 5% to 32% +/- 8%, P = .315), or end-systolic elastance (0.86 +/- 0.50 to 0.99 +/- 1.05 mm Hg/mL, P = .688). After restrictive mitral annuloplasty, end-diastolic volume tended to decrease (237 +/- 89 to 226 +/- 52 mL, P = .564), whereas end-diastolic pressure remained unchanged (14 +/- 6 to 15 +/- 5 mm Hg, P = .356). Diastolic chamber stiffness tended to increase (0.027 +/- 0.035 to 0.041 +/- 0.047 mL -1 , P = .542) but not significantly. Peak left ventricular wall stress was unchanged (356 +/- 91 to 346 +/- 85 mm Hg, P = .668). Baseline values in the control group were different, but changes in most parameters after surgical intervention showed similar nonsignificant trends.
Mitral valve repair by means of restrictive mitral annuloplasty effectively restores mitral valve competence without inducing significant acute changes in left ventricular systolic or diastolic function in patients with end-stage heart failure.
Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery 08/2005; 130(1):33-40. DOI:10.1016/j.jtcvs.2004.12.019 · 4.17 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Recent studies indicate that normothermic cardiopulmonary bypass (CPB) with intermittent antegrade warm blood cardioplegia (IAWBC) may have metabolic and clinical advantages, but limited data exist on its effects on myocardial function. Therefore, we investigated the acute effects of this approach on systolic and diastolic left ventricular function and on chronotropic responses.
In 10 patients undergoing isolated CABG we obtained on-line left ventricular pressure-volume loops using the conductance catheter before and after normothermic CPB with IAWBC. Steady state and load-independent indices of left ventricular function derived from pressure-volume relations were obtained during right atrial pacing (80-100-120 beats/min) to determine baseline systolic and diastolic function and chronotropic responses.
The mean time of CPB was 105+/-36 min (median 103, range 60-167 min) with a mean aortic cross-clamp time of 75+/-27 min (median 69, range 43-129 min). Baseline (80 beats/min) end-systolic elastance (E(ES)) did not change after CPB (1.22+/-0.53 to 1.12+/-0.28 mm Hg/ml, P>0.2), while the diastolic chamber stiffness constant (k(ED)) significantly increased (0.014+/-0.005 to 0.040+/-0.007 ml-1, P=0.018) and relaxation time constant (tau) significantly decreased (61+/-3 to 49+/-2 ms, P=0.004). Before CPB, incremental atrial pacing had no significant effects on E(ES) and tau but significant negative effects on kED (0.014+/-0.005 to 0.045+/-0.012 ml-1, P=0.013). After CPB, atrial pacing had significant positive effects on E(ES), tau and kED (E(ES): 1.12+/-0.28 to 2.60+/-1.54 mm Hg/ml, P=0.021; tau: 49+/-2 to 45+/-2 ms, P=0.009; kED: 0.040+/-0.007 to 0.026+/-0.005 mm Hg, P=0.010), indicating improved systolic and diastolic chronotropic responses.
On-pump normothermic CABG with IAWBC preserved systolic function, increased diastolic stiffness, and improved systolic and diastolic chronotropic responses. Normalization of the chronotropic responses post-CPB is likely due to effects of successful revascularization and subsequent relief of ischemia.
European Journal of Cardio-Thoracic Surgery 04/2005; 27(4):599-605. DOI:10.1016/j.ejcts.2004.11.024 · 3.30 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The treatment of posttraumatic osteomyelitis of the tibia requires meticulous debridement and adequate soft tissue coverage. At our institution, we perform a staged procedure consisting of surgical debridement followed by muscle coverage. If necessary, implantation of a cancellous iliac bone graft was always performed as a three-stage treatment.
We performed a retrospective analysis of 47 patients treated for posttraumatic osteomyelitis of the tibia between 1987 and 1998.
Twenty-two patients originally had a Gustilo grade III fracture, 21 patients had a Gustilo grade I or II or closed fracture, the Gustilo grade was not known for 2 patients, and 2 patients had no fracture. Using the Cierny-Mader classification, most patients had a localized osteomyelitis. To cover the debrided area, 20 pedicled muscle transfers and 28 microvascular free flaps were used; one patient had two localizations of osteomyelitis (both proximal and distal) and received two muscle flaps. Flap failure was 8% and was successfully treated by additional flap coverage in two cases; one was closed by a split skin graft and one was closed by secundum. Twenty-six patients received a cancellous bone graft. During an average follow-up of 94 months, 9% had a recurrence of osteomyelitis for which additional surgical interventions were necessary. Finally, all the infections were eventually cured.
Our staged surgery proved to be an excellent method of treating osteomyelitis after open or closed fractures of the tibia.
The Journal of trauma 04/2004; 56(3):633-42. DOI:10.1097/01.TA.0000112327.50235.0A · 2.96 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Mechanical dyssynchrony is an important codeterminant of cardiac dysfunction in heart failure. Treatment, either medical, surgical, or by pacing, may improve cardiac function partly by improving mechanical synchrony. Consequently, the quantification of ventricular mechanical (dys)synchrony may have important diagnostic and prognostic value and may help to determine optimal therapy. Therefore, we introduced new indexes to quantify temporal and spatial aspects of mechanical dyssynchrony derived from online segmental conductance catheter signals obtained during diagnostic cardiac catheterization. To test the feasibility and usefulness of our approach, we determined cardiac function and left ventricular mechanical dyssynchrony by the conductance catheter in heart failure patients with intraventricular conduction delay (n = 12) and in patients with coronary artery disease (n = 6) and relatively preserved left ventricular function. The heart failure patients showed depressed systolic and diastolic function. However, the most marked hemodynamic differences between the groups were found for mechanical dyssynchrony, indicating a high sensitivity and specificity of the new indexes. Comparison of conductance catheter-derived indexes with septal-to-lateral dyssynchrony derived by tissue-Doppler velocity imaging showed highly significant correlations. The proposed indexes provide additional, new, and quantitative information on temporal and spatial aspects of mechanical dyssynchrony. They may refine diagnosis of cardiac dysfunction and evaluation of interventions, and ultimately help to select optimal therapy.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Interpretation of perioperative measurements of cardiac function during cardiac surgery is complicated by changes in loading conditions induced by anesthesia, cardiopulmonary bypass (CPB), and the surgical procedure itself. Quantification of left ventricular (LV) function by pressure-volume relations as obtained by the conductance catheter would be advantageous because load independent indices can be determined. Accordingly, we evaluated methodological aspects of the conductance catheter technique and documented LV function before and after CPB in eight patients undergoing coronary artery bypass grafting. LV pressure-volume loops by transesophageal echocardiography-guided transaortic application of the conductance catheter were obtained at steady-state and during preload reduction by temporary occlusion of the inferior cava. All patients remained hemodynamically stable, and no complications occurred. Complete data were acquired within 15 min before and after CPB. Cardiac output (5.2 +/- 1.3 L/min to 6.0 +/- 1.4 L/min) and LV ejection fraction (46% +/- 17% to 48% 19%) did not change, but end-diastolic pressure increased significantly after CPB (8 +/- 2 mm Hg to 16 +/- 7 mm Hg; P < 0.05). Load-independent systolic indices remained constant (end-systolic elastance: 1.31 +/- 1.20 mm Hg/mL to 1.13 +/- 0.59 mm Hg/mL). Diastolic function changed significantly after CPB, as the relaxation time constant decreased from 64 +/- 6 ms to 52 +/- 5 ms (P < 0.05) and the chamber stiffness constant increased from 0.016 +/- 0.014/mL to 0.038 +/- 0.016/mL (P < 0.05). We conclude that the conductance catheter method provides detailed data on perioperative myocardial function and may be useful for evaluating the effects of new surgical and anesthetic procedures.