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Am J Surg. 2009 Feb;197(2):232-7. doi: 10.1016/j.amjsurg.2008.01.016.

The availability of circulating blood volume values alters fluid management in critically ill surgical patients.

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  • 1Department of Surgery, University of Hawaii, Honolulu, HI, USA.



This study evaluated whether commercially available blood volume measurements in critically ill surgical patients altered fluid management.


Patients admitted to the surgical intensive care unit of a tertiary care teaching hospital were prospectively evaluated. The frequency of changes in fluid management when results of blood volume measurements were available was determined.


In a pilot study, the frequency of instances when measurement of blood volume would have altered fluid management was statistically significant (P = .0003). In 40 subsequent patients, treatment change occurred in 36% of instances when blood volume results were obtained (P < .001). In the majority, no immediate qualitative change in clinical status occurred, with a desirable clinical response in 39% and no negative treatment responses (P < .001).


Blood volume measurements may assist in the management of critically ill surgical patients by providing a direct measure of intravascular volume. Further studies are warranted to determine its effect on outcome.

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