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Neurol Res. 1995 Apr;17(2):149-55.

Critical closing pressure in preterm neonates: towards a comprehensive model of cerebral autoregulation.

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Krankenhaus Neuk├Âlln, Kinderkrankenhaus OBM, Berlin, Germany.


In preterm neonates, intraventricular haemorrhage is linked to the dysfunction of cerebral autoregulation (AR). We aimed at tracing the critical closing pressure (CCP) in order to quantify AR and to reveal its inner workings. In an observational study, 10 preterm neonates (median, range: ga 28 weeks, 25 to 32 weeks; bw 1070, 685 to 1730 g; age 2d, 1 to 7 d) were continuously Doppler traced (a. carotis interna) for > 10 min. Systemic blood pressure (BP, a. umbilicalis, a. radialis, a. temporalis) was recorded simultaneously (> 1200 cardiac cycles each). Systolic BP was on average 11 mmHg above CCP. There was a striking parallel between both variables, even in cases of sudden spontaneous BP fluctuations > 30% (r = 0.72, 0.41 to 0.99), while systolic cerebral blood flow velocity remained largely unaffected (r = -0.15, -0.75 to 0.53), indicating a properly functioning AR. CCP was 28 mmHg, 14 to 38 mmHg. Based on our data, a physiological model of AR is developed, integrating anatomy, metabolic and neuronal pathways with former physiologic findings--including low frequency cycling of cerebral blood flow velocity. Tracing of CCP is thought to have the potential to identify infants with impaired AR. Since this method is noninvasive and independent of angle of insonation (thus rendering it uncritical in probe fixation), it is a promising tool for sustained monitoring of cerebral haemadynamics in the clinical setting.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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