J Varon, P Marik
internet, pulmonary artery catheter, survey
J Varon, P Marik. Patterns of Pulmonary Artery Catheter Utilization: An Internet-Based Survey. The Internet Journal of Emergency and Intensive Care Medicine. 1997 Volume 2 Number 2.
Introduction: The safety and effectiveness of the pulmonary artery catheters (PAC) has recently come under close scrutiny. The aim of this study was to determine the practices and impressions of a broad spectrum of critical care practitioners (CCP) using the Internet to reach CCPs around the globe.
Methods: We developed a survey which was posted at two critical care Internet sites (The Internet Journal of Emergency and Intensive Care Medicine and The New England Chapter of the Society of Critical Care Medicine). The respondents were asked to provide basic demographic data, the frequency of PAC use, as well as their assessment of the value of the PAC in various clinical situations.
Results: 280 CCP’s responded to the survey, 42% from Europe, 32% from the U.S., and 13% from South America and Mexico. 51% of respondents worked at University hospitals, 42% were full time intensivists and 32% anesthetists. 68% of respondent inserted between 1 to 5 PAC’s/week. 89% of CCP’s believed that PAC’s frequently resulted in a change in therapy. 35% of CCP’s aimed for supra-normal oxygen delivery. Only 13% were in agreement that a moratorium should be placed on the use of the PAC and 67% believed that a randomized controlled study should be performed. The responses to specific questions are outlined in the table below.
SAH =Subarachnoid hemorrhage; AMI= Acute myocardial infarction
Conclusion: This Internet-based survey suggests that despite much uncertainty most CCP’s believe that PAC are not harmful and may improve outcome in specific clinical situations.