A retrospective study on perfusion incidents and safety devices

Mejak, B.L.; Stammers, A.; Rauch, E.; Vang, S.; Viessman, T.
January 2000
Perfusion;Jan2000, Vol. 15 Issue 1, p51
Academic Journal
Despite the acceptance of extracorporeal circulation as an effective modality to facilitate cardiac surgery, patient outcomes can be negatively influenced by the occurrence of perfusion incidents. A perfusion survey was conducted to identify safety techniques and incidents related to cardiopulmonary bypass (CPB). An 80-question survey was mailed to chief perfusionists of all 1030 USA cardiac surgical centers using CPB. The survey was designed to examine practices and incidents that occurred during a 2-year period (July 1996 to July 1998). Five-hundred-and-fifty-two (54% response rate) surveys were returned, which accounted for 797 hospitals (79% of all cardiac centers) and 653 621 surgical procedures. Of the 27 identified CPB safety devices, the highest utilization was arterial line filters (98.5%) and the lowest arterial line bubble traps (3.4%). Of the reported cases, a CPB incident occurred once every 138 cases. The most common occurring incidents were protamine reactions (1:783), coagulation problems (1:771), and heater/cooler failures (1:1809). The rate of occurrence of an incident resulting in a serious injury or death was one for every 1453 procedures. Although techniques and safety devices create a relatively secure environment for CPB, lower incident rates may be achieved with further improvements in coagulation monitoring and incident reporting.


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