Category Archives: Volume 3

Use of Transcranial Doppler in Intensive Care Unit

DOI: 10.1515/jccm-2017-0021

Use of transcranial Doppler has undergone much development since its introduction in 1982, making the technique suitable for general use in intensive care units. The main application in intensive care units is to assess intracranial pressure, confirm the lack of cerebral circulation in brain death, detect vasospasm in subarachnoid haemorrhage, and monitor the blood flow parameters during thrombolysis and carotid endarterectomy, as well as measuring stenosis of the main intracranial arteries in sickle cell disease in children.
This review summarises the use of transcranial Doppler in intensive care units.

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The Importance of Haemogram Parameters in the Diagnosis and Prognosis of Septic Patients

DOI: 10.1515/jccm-2017-0019

Sepsis represents a severe pathology that requires both rapid and precise positive and differential diagnosis to identify patients who need immediate antimicrobial therapy. Monitoring septic patients’ outcome leads to prolonged hospitalisation and antibacterial therapy, often accompanied by substantial side effects, complications and a high mortality risk.
Septic patients present with complex pathophysiological and immunological disorders and with a predominance of pro-inflammatory or anti-inflammatory mediators which are heterogeneous with respect to the infectious focus, the aetiology of sepsis or patients’ immune status or comorbidities. Previous studies performed have analysed inflammatory biomarkers, but a test or combinations of tests that can quickly and precisely establish a diagnosis or prognosis of septic patients has yet to be discovered. Recent research has focused on re-analysing older accessible parameters found in the complete blood count to determine the sensitivity, specificity, positive and negative predictive values for the diagnosis and prognosis of sepsis.
The neutrophil/lymphocyte count ratio (NLCR), mean platelet volume (MPV) and red blood cells distribution width (RDW) are haemogram indicators which have been evaluated and which are of proven use in septic patients’ management.

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Reoccurrence of Bleeding of a Chronic Subdural Haematoma Following a Fall

DOI: 10.1515/jccm-2017-0020

The case of a 60-year-old patient who presented with an acute-on-chronic subdural haematoma is reported. Chronic haematoma usually remains asymptomatic, and this is considered to be an unusual course of events. Trivial or minor injury may cause the cortical bridge veins and fragile vessels in the former haematoma to rupture with concomitant reoccurrence of bleeding. Old age, repeated traumatic brain injuries, brain atrophy, antiplatelet agents and oral anticoagulants such as warfarin are considered to be the underlying conditions to cause the reoccurrence of bleeding. However, our patient did not have any of those conditions.

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The First Manifestation of a Left Atrial Myxoma as a Consequence of Multiple Left Coronary Artery Embolisms

DOI: 10.1515/jccm-2017-0018

A case of multiple embolisms in the left coronary artery as a rare first manifestation of left atrial myxoma is reported. A patient with embolic myocardial infarction and congestive heart failure was treated by percutaneous aspirations and balloon dilatations. Transesophageal echocardiography disclosed a villous myxoma with high embolic potential. Surgical resection of the tumour, suturing of a patent foramen ovale suture and an annuloplasty of the dilated tricuspid annulus was performed the third day after the admission.
Recovery of the documented left ventricular systolic function can be explained by resorption of myxomatous material. The patient was discharged ten days after the surgery.

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Raoultella ornithinolytica Diagnosed in a Neurointensive Patient. A Rare Case with Recovery without Antibiotics

DOI: 10.1515/jccm-2017-0017

Infection with Raoultella ornithinolytica is rare and normally the infection is present in patients with underlying malignancies or chronic diseases. It is normally treated with antibiotics. In this case report, a neuro-intensive patient without malignancies or other severe chronic diseases was colonized with Pseudomonas aeruginosa but infected with Raoultella ornithinolyca. The patient recovered without treatment with antibiotics.

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The Eleventh Hour: Neurosyphilis, Still Fashionable but a Controversial Diagnosis

DOI: 10.1515/jccm-2017-0015

Syphilis is a consequence of a symbiotic relationship between Treponema pallidum and humankind.
The spirochete is nowadays well characterized in shape and in length, and its entire genome is sequenced. Despite all these, confirmation of infection is based on serologic tests. The diagnosis of nervous system disease heavily depends on examination of the cerebrospinal fluid [1-4].
Neurologic involvement is generally dichotomized into early/secondary (acute meningitis, cranial nerves involvement) or late/tertiary (all the rest of the manifestations) [1].
In the current issue of Journal of Critical Care Medicine, Bologa et al. present the utility of having meningovascular syphilis in mind as a possible diagnosis, in an apparent average case of an 84-year-old patient diagnosed with stroke [5]. [More]

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Perioperative Management of Lactic Acidosis in End-Stage Liver Disease Patient

DOI: 10.1515/jccm-2017-0014

Lactic acidosis (LA) in end-stage liver disease (ESLD) patients has been recognized as one of the most complicated clinical problems and is associated with increased morbidity and mortality. Multiple-organ failure, associated with advanced stages of cirrhosis, exacerbates dysfunction of numerous parts of lactate metabolism cycle, which manifests as increased lactate production and impaired clearance, leading to severe LA-induced acidemia. These problems become especially prominent in ESLD patients, that undergo partial hepatectomy and, particularly, liver transplantation. Perioperative management of LA and associated severe acidemia is an inseparable part of anesthesia, post-operative and critical care for this category of patients, presenting a wide variety of challenges. In this review, lactic acidosis applied pathophysiology, clinical implications for ESLD patients, diagnosis, role of intraoperative factors, such as anesthesia- and surgery-related, vasoactive agents impact, and also current treatment options and modalities have been discussed.

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The Use of Endotoxin Adsorption in Extracorporeal Blood Purification Techniques. A Case Report

DOI: 10.1515/jccm-2017-0010

Sepsis and septic shock are major healthcare problems, resulting in high morbidity and mortality. The Surviving Sepsis Campaign (SSC), which standardised the approach to sepsis, was recently updated. Strategies to decrease the systemic inflammatory response have been proposed to modulate organ dysfunctions. Endotoxin, derived from the membrane of Gram-negative bacteria, is considered a major factor in the pathogenesis of sepsis. Endotoxin adsorption, if effective, has the potential to reduce the biological cascade of Gram-negative sepsis.  We present a case of a 64-year-old man with severe Gram-negative sepsis, following purulent peritonitis secondary to rectosigmoid adenocarcinoma. To reduce the amplitude of the general effects of endotoxins we used a novel device, the Alteco® LPS Adsorber (Alteco Medical AB, Lund, Sweden), for lipopolysaccharide (LPS) adsorption
The efficacy markers were: the overall haemodynamic profile, translated into decreased vasopressor requirements, the normalisation of the cardiac index, the systemic vascular resistance index combined with the lactate level and the reduction in procalcitonin (PCT) levels. A decrease in the sequential organ failure assessment (SOFA) score at twenty-four hours was demonstrated. The clinical course following treatment was favourable for the days immediately following the treatment.This was attributed to the removal of endotoxin from the systemic circulation. The patient died one week after the endotoxin removal session, developing an ischemic bowel perforation with subsequent multiple organ failures.

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