End-tidal and arterial carbon dioxide measurements correlate across all levels of physiologic dead space.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

BACKGROUND: End-tidal carbon dioxide (P(ETCO(2))) is a surrogate, noninvasive measurement of arterial carbon dioxide (P(aCO(2))), but the clinical applicability of P(ETCO(2)) in the intensive care unit remains unclear. Available research on the relationship between P(ETCO(2)) and P(aCO(2)) has not taken a detailed assessment of physiologic dead space into consideration. We hypothesized that P(ETCO(2)) would reliably predict P(aCO(2)) across all levels of physiologic dead space, provided that the expected P(ETCO(2))-P(aCO(2)) difference is considered. METHODS: Fifty-six mechanically ventilated pediatric patients (0-17 y old, mean weight 19.5 +/- 24.5 kg) were monitored with volumetric capnography. For every arterial blood gas measurement during routine care, we measured P(ETCO(2)) and calculated the ratio of dead space to tidal volume (V(D)/V(T)). We assessed the P(ETCO(2))-P(aCO(2)) relationship with Pearson's correlation coefficient, in 4 V(D)/V(T) ranges. RESULTS: V(D)/V(T) was 0.7 for 54 measurements (11%). The correlation coefficients between P(ETCO(2)) and P(aCO(2)) were 0.95 (mean difference 0.3 +/- 2.1 mm Hg) for V(D)/V(T) 0.7. CONCLUSIONS: There were strong correlations between P(ETCO(2)) and P(aCO(2)) in all the V(D)/V(T) ranges. The P(ETCO(2))-P(aCO(2)) difference increased predictably with increasing V(D)/V(T).

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • McSwain, SD; Hamel, DS; Smith, PB; Gentile, MA; Srinivasan, S; Meliones, JN; Cheifetz, IM

Published Date

  • March 2010

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 55 / 3

Start / End Page

  • 288 - 293

PubMed ID

  • 20196877

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC2837928

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0020-1324


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States