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Med Intensiva. 2011 Nov;35(8):509-17. doi: 10.1016/j.medin.2011.05.005. Epub 2011 Jun 15.

[Electrical impedance tomography in acute lung injury].

[Article in Spanish]

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Servicio de Medicina Intensiva, Hospital Universitario Vall d'Hebron, Vall d'Hebron Institut de Recerca, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, Barcelona, España.


Electrical impedance tomography has been described as a new method of monitoring critically ill patients on mechanical ventilation. It has recently gained special interest because of its applicability for monitoring ventilation and pulmonary perfusion. Its bedside and continuous implementation, and the fact that it is a non-ionizing and non-invasive technique, makes it an extremely attractive measurement tool. Likewise, given its ability to assess the regional characteristics of lung structure, it could be considered an ideal monitoring tool in the heterogeneous lung with acute lung injury. This review explains the physical concept of bioimpedance and its clinical application, and summarizes the scientific evidence published to date with regard to the implementation of electrical impedance tomography as a method for monitoring ventilation and perfusion, mainly in the patient with acute lung injury, and other possible applications of the technique in the critically ill patient. The review also summarizes the limitations of the technique and its potential areas of future development.

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