Horseradish Peroxidase as a Histological Indicator of Mechanisms of Porcine Retinal Vascular Damage and Protection With Perfluorocarbons After Massive Air Embolism
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Background and Purpose This laboratory has previously shown that a second-generation perfluorocarbon emulsion (PFE) reduces the severity of cerebral injury induced by air embolism during cardiopulmonary bypass (CPB). Horseradish peroxidase examines vascular permeability and was used in this study of the mechanisms of cellular protection afforded by the PFE.
Methods Twenty domestic pigs underwent CPB with a prime of standard crystalloid or PFE (5 mg/kg) and crystalloid. After 10 minutes on CPB, a 5-mL/kg bolus of room air or saline (control) was delivered via the right carotid artery. The air insult was delivered as either a single bolus or double bolus. After 1 hour of CPB and 1 hour of spontaneous reperfusion, horseradish peroxidase was injected intravenously and circulated for 15 minutes. After euthanasia, both eyes were removed, and the retinas were isolated for histological analysis.
Results Total length of retinal vessels exhibiting horseradish peroxidase extravasation was significantly less in PFE pigs (P<.05). Vascular spasm and red blood cell hemorrhages were unaffected by PFE. PFE pigs exhibited mild to moderate vascular nonperfusion and red blood cell sludging; crystalloid groups demonstrated severe nonperfusion and sludging.
Conclusions Histological staining with horseradish peroxidase indicated that mechanisms of cerebral air embolism include vascular endothelial leakage, vascular nonperfusion, and red blood cell sludging and hemorrhage. Pretreatment with PFE prevented some sequelae associated with massive air embolism and CPB.
- Received March 31, 1997.
- Revision received June 7, 1997.
- Accepted June 18, 1997.
- Copyright © 1997 by American Heart Association