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Hemodynamic Measurement Terminology


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Blood Pressure Systolic (SBP) 90-140 mmHg

Diastolic (DBP) 60-90mmHg

Mean Arterial Pressure (MAP) 70 - 100 mm Hg

Cardiac Index (CI) 2.5-4 L/min/m2

Cardiac Output (CO) 4-8 L/min

Central Venous Pressure (CVP) (also known as Right Atrial Pressure (RA))

2-6 mmHg

Pulmonary Artery Pressure (PA) Systolic 20-30 mmHg (PAS)

Diastolic 8-12 mmHg (PAD)

Mean 25 mmHg (PAM)

Pulmonary Capillary Wedge Pressure (PWCP) 4-12 mmHg

Pulmonary Vascular Resistance (PVR) 37-250 dynes/sec/cm5

Right Ventricular Pressure (RV) Systolic -20-30 mmHg Diastolic 0-5 mmHg

Stroke Index (SI) 25 - 45 ml/m2

Stroke Volume (SV) 50 - 100 ml

Systemic Vascular Resistance (SVR) 800-1200 dynes/sec/cm5


Afterload: Afterload describes the resistance that the heart has to overcome, during every beat, to send blood into the aorta. These resistive forces include vasoactivity and blood viscosity.

Cardiac Index (CI): The amount of blood pumped by the heart, per minute, per meter square of body surface area.

Cardiac Output (CO): The volume of blood pumped by the heart in one minute.

Increased cardiac output may indicate a high circulating volume.

Decreased cardiac output indicates a decrease in circulating volume or a decrease in the strength of ventricular contraction.

Central Venous Pressure (CVP): CVP readings are used to approximate the Right Ventricular End Diastolic Pressure (RVEDP). The RVEDP assesses right ventricular function and general fluid status.

Low CVP values typically reflect hypovolemia or decreased venous return.

High CVP values reflect overhydration, increased venous return or right sided cardiac failure.

Mean Arterial Pressure (MAP): Reflects changes in the relationship between cardiac output (CO) and systemic vascular resistance (SVR) and reflects the arterial pressure in the vessels perfusing the organs.

A low MAP indicates decreased blood flow through the organs.

A high MAP indicates an increased cardiac workload.

Preload: Preload occurs during diastole. It is the combination of pulmonary blood filling the atria and the stretching of myocardial fibers. Preload is regulated by the variability in intravascular volume.

Volume reduction decreases preload

Volume increase will increase preload, mean arterial pressure (MAP) and stroke index (SI).

Pulmonary Artery Pressure (PA Pressure): Blood pressure in the pulmonary artery.

Increased pulmonary artery pressure may indicate: a left-to-right cardiac shunt, pulmonary artery hypertension, COPD or emphysema, pulmonary embolus, pulmonary edema, left ventricular failure.

Pulmonary Capillary Wedge Pressure (PCWP or PAWP): PCWP pressures are used to approximate LVEDP (left ventricular end diastolic pressure).

High PCWP may indicate left ventricle failure, mitral valve pathology, cardiac insufficiency, cardiac compression post hemorrhage.

Pulmonary Vascular Resistance (PVR): The measurement of resistance or the impediment of the pulmonary vascular bed to blood flow.

An increased PVR or "Pulmonary Hypertension" is caused by pulmonary vascular disease, pulmonary embolism, or pulmonary vasculitis, or hypoxia.

A decreased PVR is caused by medications such as calcium channel blockers, aminophylline, or isoproterenol or by the delivery of O2.

Right Ventricular Pressure (RV Pressure): A direct measurement that indicates right ventricular function and general fluid status.

High RV pressure may indicate: pulmonary hypertension, right ventricle failure, congestive heart failure.

Stroke Index or Stroke Volume Index: (SI or SVI): The amount of blood ejected from the heart in one cardiac cycle, relative to Body Surface Area (BSA). It is measured in ml per meter square per beat.

An increased SVI may be indicative of early septic shock, hyperthermia, hypervolemia or be caused by medications such as dopamine, dobutamine, or digitalis.

A decreased SVI may be caused by CHF, late septic shock, beta blockers, or an MI.

Stroke Volume (SV): The amount of blood pumped by the heart per cardiac cycle. It is measured in ml/beat.

A decreased SV may indicate impaired cardiac contractility or valve dysfunction and may result in heart failure.

An increased SV may be caused by an increase in circulating volume or an increase in inotropy.

Systemic Vascular Resistance (SVR): The measurement of resistance or impediment of the systemic vascular bed to blood flow.

An increased SVR can be caused by vasoconstrictors, hypovolemia, or late septic shock.

A decreased SVR can be caused by early septic shock, vasodilators, morphine, nitrates, or hypercarbia.


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