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Perfusion. 2018 Sep;33(6):453-462. doi: 10.1177/0267659118766437. Epub 2018 Apr 6.

A retrospective analysis of the mixed venous oxygen saturation as the target for systemic blood flow control during cardiopulmonary bypass.

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1 Department of Public Health and Clinical Medicine, Heart Centre, Umeå University, Umeå, Sweden.
2 Department of Surgical and Perioperative Sciences, Anaesthesiology and Intensive Care Medicine, Umeå University, Umeå, Sweden.



The patient's body surface area serves as the traditional reference for the determination of systemic blood flow during cardiopulmonary bypass (CPB). New strategies refer to different algorithms of oxygen delivery. This study reports on the mixed venous oxygen saturation (SvO2) as the target for systemic blood flow control. We hypothesise that an SvO2>75% (SvO275) is associated with better preservation of renal function and improved short-term survival.


This retrospective, 10-year, observational study analysed 6945 consecutive cardiac surgical cases requiring CPB. Endpoints included rates of acute kidney injury (AKI) and short-term survival, also the estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR), lactate levels and blood transfusions.


Seventy-seven percent of the patients attained the SvO275 target. For this group, the median SvO2 was 78.1 (5.8) %, with a mean oxygen delivery of 331 (78) ml/min per m2 body surface area. Overall incidence of AKI levels (I-III): 7.5% - 2.6% - 0.6%. Incidence of eGFR (<50%): 3.9%, increasing to 6% for haemoglobin levels <80 g/L (p<0.001). Red cell transfusion was more frequent (p<0.001) within this group (30.6%) compared to levels >100 g/L (0.3%). Further, women (52.8%) were transfused more often than men (14.6%). Lactate level at weaning from CPB was 1.3 (0.7) mmol/L. The SvO275 target demonstrated a relative risk reduction of 22.5% (p=0.032) for AKI (I), increasing to 32.3% (p=0.026) for procedures extending >90 minutes. In addition, the risk for death 90-days postop was lower (p=0.039).


The SvO275 target showed a decreased risk for postoperative AKI and prolonged short-term survival. Good clinical outcomes were also linked to measures of lactate and the eGFR. However, anaemia remains a risk factor for AKI.


acute kidney injury; blood flow control; cardiopulmonary bypass; lactate; mixed venous oxygen saturation; survival

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