Critical Care Reviews Newsletter

March 12th 2012




Welcome to the 14th Critical Care Reviews Newsletter. Every week over two hundred clinical and scientific journals are monitored and the most important and interesting research publications in critical care are highlighted. These studies are added to the Journal Watch section of the website on a daily basis, as publication occurs. A link to either the full text or abstract, depending on the publishers degree of open access, is attached.

As there has been very little prospective research of clinical significance published in the past week, I've decided to open the Newsletter to newly published open acess review articles, guidelines and other relevant publications. These will be added to their relevant webpages also.



Scandanavian Journal of Trauma, Resuscitation and Emergency Medicine


Biosecurity and Bioterrorism: Biodefense Strategy, Practice, and Science


Minerva Anestesiologica


Journal of Anesthesia


Journal of Anaesthesiology Clinical Pharmacology


Annals of Cardiac Anaesthesia


Annals of Intensive Care


Journal of the Intensive Care Society





Critical Care:  Percutaneous Tracheostomy

To evaluate the feasibility of ultrasound-guided percutaneous tracheostomy in obese critically ill patients, Guinot and colleagues compared this procedure in 26 obese subjects with 24 non-obese subjects (BMI 35 v 25 kg/m2, p<0.001). There were no differences in procedure duration (9 min v 10 min; p=0.1) or complication rate (35% v 33%; p=0.92), with most complications being of minor significance, including hypotension, desaturation, tracheal cuff puncture and minor bleeding. No surgical conversions were required in either group and no deaths occurred.

Full Text: Guinot. Ultrasound-guided percutaneous tracheostomy in critically ill obese patients. Critical Care 2012;16:R40


The Lancet:  Stem Cell Therapy for Ischaemic Cardiac Dysfunction

In the prospective CADUCEUS study, Makker and colleagues randomised 25 patients with left ventricular ejection fraction of 25—45% 2—4 weeks after myocardial infarction  to receive either autologous cardiosphere stem cells or standard care in a 2:1 ratio. At 6 months, therapy with cardiosphere stem cells was associated with reductions in scar mass (p=0·001), increases in viable heart mass (p=0·01), regional contractility (p=0·02), and regional systolic wall thickening (p=0·015), when assessed with MRI . However, there were no differences in end-diastolic volume, end-systolic volume, or left ventricular ejection fraction.  The authors conclude intracoronary infusion of cardiosphere stem cells after myocardial infarction is safe and should progress to phase 2 studies.

Abstract: Makker. Intracoronary cardiosphere-derived cells for heart regeneration after myocardial infarction (CADUCEUS): a prospective, randomised phase 1 trial. Lancet 2012;379(9819):895-904





I hope you find the Newsletter useful.

Until next week