Do pulmonary artery catheters cause or increase tricuspid or pulmonic valvular regurgitation?

Steven V. Sherman, Michael H. Wall, Daniel J. Kennedy, Robert F. Brooker, John Butterworth

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


There are few quantitative data on the extent or mechanism of pulmonary artery catheter (PAC)-induced valvular dysfunction. We hypothesized that PACs cause or worsen tricuspid and pulmonic valvular regurgitation, and tested this hypothesis by using transesophageal echocardiography. In 54 anesthetized adult patients, we measured color Doppler jet areas of tricuspid regurgitation (TR) in two planes (midesophageal [ME] 4-chamber and right ventricular inflow-outflow views) and pulmonic insufficiency (PI) in one plane (ME aortic valve long-axis view), both before and after we advanced a PAC into the pulmonary artery. Regurgitant jet areas and hemodynamic measurements were compared by using paired t-test. There were no significant changes in blood pressure or heart rate after passage of the PAC. After PAC placement, the mean PI jet area was not significantly increased. The mean TR jet area increased significantly in the right ventricular inflow-outflow view (+0.37 ± 0.11 cm2) (P = 0.0014), but did not increase at the ME 4-chamber view. Seventeen percent of patients had an increase in TR jet area ≥1 cm2; 8% of patients had an increase in PI jet area ≥1 cm2.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1117-1122
Number of pages6
JournalAnesthesia and analgesia
Issue number5
StatePublished - Jan 1 2001


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