Iwona Pikto-Pietkiewicz, Antoni Okniński, Rafał Wójtowicz, Marlena Wójtowicz
Central Clinical Hospital of the MSWiA. Clinical Department of Intensive Care and Anaesthesiology. Warsaw, Poland
Introduction: The current lack of clear guidelines on how to manage cases of brain-dead pregnant patients makes this topic controversial and extremely difficult to deal with for both medical and ethical reasons. This report deals with such a situation.
Case presentation: A twenty-seven years old woman, thirteen weeks pregnant, with a ruptured brain aneurysm was admitted to an Intensive Care Unit. She presented with loss of all brain functions, but somatic support was sustained to enable the delivery of her baby.
Conclusion: The case report gives a detailed account of the management of the mother before the successful delivery of her baby. It indicates the need for ongoing contributions to the debate on this delicate subject area to establish guidelines on how to manage brain-dead pregnant patients.
Ondokuz Mayıs University School of Medicine, Division of Pediatric Critical Care, Samsun , Turkey
Introduction: Brain death is currently defined as the loss of full brain function including the brainstem. The diagnosis and its subsequent management in the pediatric population are still controversial. The aim of this study was to define the demographic characteristics, clinical features and outcomes of patients with brain death and determine the incidence of brain death, donation rates and occurrence of central diabetes insipidus accompanying brain death in children.
Methods: This retrospective study was conducted at a twelve-bed tertiary-care combined medical and surgical pediatric intensive care unit of the Ondokuz Mayıs University Medical School, Samsun, Turkey. In 37 of 341 deaths (10.8%), a diagnosis of brain death was identified. The primary insult causing brain death was post-cardiorespiratory arrest in 8 (21.6%), head trauma in 8 (21.6%), and drowning in 4 (18.9%). In all patients, transcranial Doppler ultrasound was utilised as an ancillary test and test was repeated until it was consistent with brain death.
Results: In 33 (89%) patients, central diabetes insipidus was determined at or near the time brain death was confirmed. The four patients not diagnosed with CDI had acute renal failure, and renal replacement treatment was carried out. The consent rate for organ donation was 18.9%, and 16.7% of potential donors proceeded to actual donation
Conclusion: In the current study the consent rate for organ donation is relatively low compared to the rest of the world. The prevalence of central diabetes insipidus in this pedaitric brain death population is higher than reports in the literature, and acute renal failure accounted for the lack of central diabetes insipidus in four patients with brain death. Further studies are needed to explain normouria in brain-dead patients.
1 Department of Family and Occupational Medicine, Faculty of Public Health, University of Debrecen, Debrecen, Hungary
2 Department of Neurology, University of Debrecen, Móricz Zs. krt. 22, H-4032 Debrecen, Hungary
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.