Noninvasive assessment of hemodynamics: an emphasis on bioimpedance cardiography.
Evaluation of the hemodynamic response in heart failure is a useful adjunct in clinical management. Invasive monitoring has been the accepted gold standard of hemodynamic assessment but carries with it significant associated risks. Noninvasive hemodynamic assessment in heart failure previously has been either unreliable or difficult to obtain. Bioimpedance relies on the proportional change in the conduction of alternating current applied across the thorax as a function of blood volume in the heart and great vessels. Stroke volume, cardiac output, thoracic fluid content, and measures of diastolic function can be determined with bioimpedance. Impedance cardiography is becoming an accepted method for safe, reliable, and reproducible assessment of hemodynamics in heart failure.
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