Endoscopic doppler ultrasound for measurement of azygos blood flow: Validation against thermodilution and assessment of pharmacological effects of terlipressin in portal hypertension

E. F. Hansen*, F. Bendtsen, K. Brinch, S. Møller, J. H. Henriksen, U. Becker

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Background: Endoscopic ultrasound (EUS) is a new modality allowing real-time flow measurements by means of the Doppler technique. The aim of the study was to evaluate azygos blood flow measurements by endoscopic ultrasound. Methods: Measurements of azygos blood flow by EUS and by the thermodilution technique were compared in 20 patients with portal hypertension. The ability of EUS flowmetry to detect changes in the azygos and portal venous flow after an intravenous dose of 2 mg of terlipressin was evaluated in 13 of the patients in a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled, cross-over design. Results: The EUS Doppler and thermodilution measurements correlated significantly (R=0.81, P < 0.001). The azygos blood flow was found to be 14% higher by the EUS method than by thermodilution. The coefficient of variation of the EUS Doppler measurements of the azygos blood flow was 14.8%. After administration of terlipressin, the azygos blood flow, as measured by EUS Doppler, decreased significantly by 23% from 915 to 704 ml/min (P = 0.014) and the portal venous flow decreased by 28% from 1170 to 789 ml/min (P = 0.03). No effects of placebo were detected. Conclusions: These results show that EUS measurement of the azygos blood flow correlate strongly to the measurements by the thermodilution technique, and EUS is moreover well tolerated by the patients. The method is applicable for monitoring pharmacological effects on the superior porto-systemic collateral circulation and portal venous flow in patients with portal hypertension.

TidsskriftScandinavian Journal of Gastroenterology
Udgave nummer3
Sider (fra-til)318-325
Antal sider8
StatusUdgivet - 1. jan. 2001