CARDIOPULMONARY MONITORING: Edited by Jan BakkerHow to assess ventriculoarterial coupling in sepsisPinsky, Michael R.a; Guarracino, FabiobAuthor Information aDepartment of Critical Care Medicine, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA bDepartment of Anesthesia and Critical Care Medicine, Azienda Ospedaliero Universitaria Pisana, Pisa, Italy Correspondence to Michael R. Pinsky, MD, Department of Critical Care Medicine, University of Pittsburgh, 638 Scaife Hall, 3550 Terrace Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15261, USA. E-mail: [email protected] Current Opinion in Critical Care: June 2020 - Volume 26 - Issue 3 - p 313-318 doi: 10.1097/MCC.0000000000000721 Buy Metrics Abstract Purpose of review We will highlight the role of ventriculoarterial coupling in the pathophysiology of sepsis and how to assess it. Recent findings Most septic patients show a ventriculoarterial uncoupling at the time of diagnosis with arterial elastance (Ea) greater than left ventricle (LV) end-systolic elastance (Ees), often despite arterial hypotension. Ventriculoarterial coupling levels predict the cardiovascular response to resuscitation in this heterogeneously responding population. Summary Ventriculoarterial coupling is quantified as the ratio of Ea to Ees. The efficiency of the cardiovascular function is optimal when Ea/Ees is near one. When the hydraulic load of the arterial system is excessive either from increased vasomotor tone, decreased LV contractility or both, Ea/Ees becomes greater than 1 (i.e. ventriculoarterial decoupling), and cardiac efficiency decreases leading to heart failure, loss of volume responsiveness, and if sustained, increased mortality. Noninvasive echocardiographic techniques when linked with arterial pressure monitoring allow for the bedside estimates of both Ea and Ees. Studies using this approach have documented the key role ventriculoarterial coupling has defining initial cardiovascular state, response to therapy and outcome from critical illness. Sequential monitoring of ventriculoarterial coupling at the bedside offers a unique opportunity to assess relevant cardiovascular determinants in septic patients requiring resuscitation. Copyright © 2020 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. All rights reserved.