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Highly Accessed Review

Clinical review: Does it matter which hemodynamic monitoring system is used?

Davinder Ramsingh, Brenton Alexander and Maxime Cannesson*

Author Affiliations

Department of Anesthesiology & Perioperative Care, University of California, Irvine, 101 S City Drive, Orange, CA 92868, USA

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Critical Care 2012, 17:208  doi:10.1186/cc11814

Published: 5 March 2013

Abstract

Hemodynamic monitoring and management has greatly improved during the past decade. Technologies have evolved from very invasive to non-invasive, and the philosophy has shifted from a static approach to a functional approach. However, despite these major changes, the critical care community still has potential to improve its ability to adopt the most modern standards of research methodology in order to more effectively evaluate new monitoring systems and their impact on patient outcome. Today, despite the huge enthusiasm raised by new hemodynamic monitoring systems, there is still a big gap between clinical research studies evaluating these monitors and clinical practice. A few studies, especially in the perioperative period, have shown that hemodynamic monitoring systems coupled with treatment protocols can improve patient outcome. These trials are small and, overall, the corpus of science related to this topic does not yet fit the standard of clinical research methodology encountered in other specialties such as cardiology and oncology. Larger randomized trials or quality improvement processes will probably answer questions related to the real impact of these systems.