I had a patient come in for a 2 stage endovascular aortic repair. The patient had a 1st stage left carotid to subclavian bypass done about 3 days ago. We did a 2nd stage TEVAR for a descending aortic aneurysm. The patient did really well. Stayed in constant communication with the vascular surgeon as well as endovascular surgeon. A plan was in place. Patient was maximally beta blocked. I found dexmetetomidine to be a great drug for sedation pre-induction as well as blunting any responses to laryngoscopy during induction. Cordis for volume. Used the side port of the cordis for drips (nicardipine, phenylephrine). There were various times during the surgery where the surgeon wanted hypotension vs. hypertension. During deployment of the stent, SBP < 90. Once the stent was deployed, goal SBP 140 (MAP>90). Overall great case and great outcome for the patient.
What is a TEVAR (Thoracic EndoVascular Aortic Repair)?
I have been utilizing ERAS in general surgery, OB, and ortho cases. Diving into one of my more tricky populations, I opted to see what ERAS practices are out there for cardiac surgery. Careful what you look for my friends. There’s actually a good amount of information out there!
There’s been a big debate re: who should care for LVAD patients… a general anesthesiologist or a cardiac anesthesiologist? See below for pros and cons of each. Ultimately, I think all anesthesiologists should be comfortable caring for these patients as we’ll see more and more LVAD patients undergoing procedures.
Goals of care for LVAD patients undergoing non-cardiac surgery should be directed at maintaining forward flow and adequate perfusion. Three main factors that affect LVAD flow are preload, RV function, and afterload.
The right ventricle is the primary means of LVAD filling; therefore, maintaining RV function is imperative.
Marked increases in systemic vascular resistance should be avoided.
Generally, decreases in pump flow should first be treated with a fluid challenge. Hypovolemia should be avoided and intraoperative losses should be replaced aggressively. Second line treatment should include inotropic support for the right ventricle.
Low-dose vasopressin (<2.4 U/h) may be the vasopressor of choice due to its minimal effect on pulmonary vascular resistance.
Standard Advanced Cardiovascular Life Support Guidelines should be followed; however, external chest compressions should be avoided during cardiac arrest.
Steep Trendelenburg may increase venous return, risking RV strain. Peritoneal insufflation for laparoscopic surgery also increases afterload and has detrimental effects on preload. Insufflation should utilize minimum pressures and be increased in a gradual, step-wise fashion.
TEE can be extremely valuable in diagnosing the cause of obstruction.
The other day we had a patient come in for a CABG. Aside for some coronary artery disease, hypertension, and chronic kidney disease, the patient was pretty healthy. They were not on anticoagulation prior to the procedure.
After I gave full dose heparin for going on bypass (41,000U in this case), the ACT only came up to 422. An additional 10,000U of heparin was given with a repeat ACT of 457. Still, our surgeon was not quite comfortable with that number and requested an additional 10,000U heparin. The ACT came to 477.
If the ACT stayed in the low 400s, would you go on bypass? What if the ACT had not responded to the repeated heparin dosings?
We ultimately decided to go on bypass. Repeat ACTs on bypass were in the 500s. No antithrombin was given. After separation from cardiopulmonary bypass and administration of protamine, repeat ACT was 111. Protamine was dosed accordingly to heparin administration and ACTs while on bypass.