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J Appl Physiol (1985). 1992 Jun;72(6):2176-80.

Extracorporeal circulation in the isolated in situ lamb placenta: hemodynamic characteristics.

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Department of Cardiovascular Surgery, Children's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts 02115.


Decreased placental perfusion and respiratory gas exchange have been observed after experimental fetal cardiopulmonary bypass (CPB). To better characterize placental hemodynamics during CPB, seven isolated in situ lamb placentas were placed on a CPB circuit by use of umbilical arterial and venous cannulation. Measures were taken to simulate normal placental hemodynamics. Perfusion flow rates were varied from 15 to 300 fetal wt-1 during normothermia and hypothermia. Placental vascular resistance (PVR) remained constant when perfusion pressure and flow were varied above 40 mmHg and 150, respectively. Below these values, PVR varied inversely. This increase in PVR was more marked when CPB was performed with hypothermia than with normothermia. The clinical implication is that decreased placental flow and pressure on CPB may lead to a vicious cycle, resulting in further impairment of placental perfusion and respiratory gas exchange. Hypothermia promotes this impairment.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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