Author(s): Chatzimichali A, Zoumprouli A, Metaxari M, Apostolakis I, Daras T,
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Abstract BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: The reported incidence of cardiac arrest during spinal anaesthesia is 6.4+1.2 per 10,000 patients. Many of these arrests occurred in healthy young patients during minor surgery. This raises the question of whether some of them were avoidable. We investigated the value of Heart Rate Variability (HRV) to identify patients prone to developing severe bradycardia during spinal anaesthesia. METHODS: Eighty ASA I-II patients, 21-60 years of age, undergoing elective surgery under spinal anaesthesia were studied. The HRV was assessed for 25 min before the spinal block. Two spectral components of HRV were calculated: a low-frequency (LF) and a high-frequency (HF) component. Patients were grouped according to whether bradycardia did or did not develop during spinal anaesthesia. RESULTS: Nineteen patients developed severe bradycardia (<45 b.p.m.). The mean value of HF before spinal anaesthesia was significantly increased in the bradycardic group (P<0.05). The correlation between baseline heart rate (HR(baseline)) and minimum heart rate and LF, HF during spinal anaesthesia was significant (P<0.01). A receiver operator curve characteristic analysis showed a sensitivity and specificity of HF and HR(baseline) of 65\% and 74\%, respectively, to predict bradycardia <45 b.p.m. after spinal anaesthesia. CONCLUSIONS: The present study shows that HF and clinical factors such as patient's HR(baseline) could identify patients prone to developing severe bradycardia during spinal anaesthesia. © 2010 The Authors. Journal compilation © 2010 The Acta Anaesthesiologica Scandinavica Foundation.
This article was published in Acta Anaesthesiol Scand
and referenced in Journal of Anesthesia & Clinical Research