DOI: 10.1177/10892532231198797 ISSN:

Pressure–Volume Loops for Reviewing Right Ventricular Physiology and Failure in the Context of Left Ventricular Assist Device Implantation

Stefaan Bouchez, Joachim Erb, Luc Foubert, Eckhard Mauermann
  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine

Right ventricular (RV) function is complex as a number of determinants beyond preload, inotropy and afterload play a fundamental role. In particular, arterial elastance (Ea), ventriculo-arterial coupling (VAC), and (systolic) ventricular interdependence play a vital role for the right ventricle. Understanding and actively visualizing these interactions in the failing RV as well as in the altered hemodynamic and morphological situation of left ventricular assist device (LVAD) implantation may aid clinicians in their understanding of RV dysfunction and failure. While, admittedly, hard data is scarce and invasive pressure-volume loop measurements will not become routine in cardiac surgery, we hope that clinicians will benefit from the comprehensive, simulation-based review of RV pathology. In particular, the aim of this article is to first, address and clarify the pathophysiologic hemodynamic factors that lead to RV dysfunction and then, second, expand upon this basis examining the changes occurring by LVAD implantation. This is illustrated using Harvi software which shows elastance, ventricular arterial coupling, and ventricular interdependence by simultaneously showing pressure volume loops of the right and left ventricle.

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