Strauch, J. T., D. Spielvogel, P. L. Haldenwang, H. Shiang, N. Zhang, D. Weisz, C. A. Bodian and R. B. Griepp. Changes in regional cerebral blood flow under hypothermic selective cerebral perfusion. Thorac Cardiovasc Surg. 52:82-9, 2004.

OBJECTIVE: Currently the most frequently used perfusion technique during aortic arch surgery to prevent cerebral damage is hypothermic selective cerebral perfusion (SCP). Changes in cerebral blood flow (CBF) are known to occur during these procedures. We investigated regional changes of CBF under conditions of SCP in a porcine model. METHODS: In this blinded study, twenty-three juvenile pigs (20 - 22 kg) were randomized after cooling to 20 degrees C on CPB. Group I (n = 12) underwent SCP for 90 minutes, while group II (n = 11) underwent total body perfusion. Fluorescent microspheres were injected at seven time-points to calculate total and regional CBF. Hemodynamics, intracranial pressure (ICP), cerebrovascular resistance (CVR) and oxygen consumption were assessed. Tissue samples from the neocortex, cerebellum, hippocampus and brain stem were taken for a microsphere count. RESULTS: CBF decreased significantly (p = 0.0001) during cooling, but remained at significantly higher levels with SCP than with CPB throughout perfusion (p < 0.0001) and recovery (p < 0.0001). These findings were similar among all regions of the brain, certainly at different levels. Neocortex CBF decreased 50%, whereas brain stem and hippocampus CBF decreased by only 25 % during total body perfusion. All four regions showed 10 - 20% less CBF in the post-CPB period. CBF during SCP did not fall by more than 20% in any analysed region. The hippocampus turned out to have the lowest CBF, while the neocortex showed the highest CBF. CONCLUSION: SCP improves CBF in all regions of the brain. Our study characterizes the brain specific hierarchy of blood flow during SCP and total body perfusion. These dynamics are highly relevant for clinical strategies of perfusion.