The objective of this study is to evaluate electrocardiography (ECG)-synchronized pulsatile flow under varying heart rates and different atrial and ventricular arrhythmias in a simulated extracorporeal life support (ECLS) system. The ECLS circuit consisted of an i-cor diagonal pump and console, an iLA membrane ventilator, and an 18 Fr arterial cannula. The circuit was primed with lactated Ringer's solution and packed red blood cells (hematocrit 35%). An ECG simulator was used to trigger pulsatile flow and to generate selected cardiac rhythms. All trials were conducted at a flow rate of 2.5 L/min at room temperature for normal sinus rhythm at 45–180 bpm under non-pulsatile and pulsatile modes. Various atrial and ventricular arrhythmias were also tested. Real-time pressure and flow data were recorded using a custom-based data acquisition system. The energy equivalent pressure (EEP) generated by pulsatile flow was always higher than the mean pressure. No surplus hemodynamic energy (SHE) was recorded under non-pulsatile mode. Under pulsatile mode, SHE levels increased with increasing heart rates (45–120 bpm). SHE levels under a 1:2 assist ratio were higher than the 1:1 and 1:3 assist ratios with a heart rate of 180 bpm. A similar trend was recorded for total hemodynamic energy levels. There was no statistical difference between the two perfusion modes with regards to pressure drops across the ECLS circuit. The main resistance and energy loss came from the arterial cannula. The i-cor console successfully tracked electrocardiographic signals of 12 atrial and ventricular arrhythmias. Our results demonstrated that the i-cor pulsatile ECLS system can be synchronized with a normal heart rate or with various atrial/ventricular arrhythmias. Further in vivo studies are warranted to confirm our findings.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Medicine (miscellaneous)
- Biomedical Engineering