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J Perinatol. 2008 Nov;28(11):729-35. doi: 10.1038/jp.2008.100. Epub 2008 Jul 17.

Does point-of-care functional echocardiography enhance cardiovascular care in the NICU?

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  • 1Division of Neonatology, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.


Although the last two decades have seen major advances in the care of sick, extremely premature newborns, the approach to cardiovascular assessment and monitoring remains suboptimal owing to an overreliance on poorly predictive clinical markers such as heart rate or capillary refill time. Point-of-care functional echocardiography (PCFecho) enables real-time evaluation of cardiac performance and systemic hemodynamics to characterize acute physiology, identify the exact nature of cardiovascular compromise and guide therapeutic decisions. In this article, we will review four clinical scenarios where bedside functional cardiac imaging enabled delineation of the real clinical problem and refinement of the therapeutic care plan with direct patient benefits.

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