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Objective cardiovascular assessment in the neonatal intensive care unit
  1. Eugene M Dempsey1,2,
  2. Afif Faisal El-Khuffash3,4
  1. 1 Department of Paediatrics and Child Health, Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, University College Cork, Cork, Ireland
  2. 2 INFANT, Irish Centre for Fetal and Neonatal Translational Research, University College Cork, Cork, Ireland
  3. 3 Department of Neonatology, The Rotunda Hospital, Dublin, Ireland
  4. 4 Department of Paediatrics, School of Medicine, The Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland, Dublin, Ireland
  1. Correspondence to Dr Eugene M Dempsey, Department of Paediatric and Child Health, Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, Wilton, Cork, Ireland; g.dempsey{at}


Traditionally, cardiovascular well-being was essentially based on whether the mean blood pressure was above or below a certain value. However, this singular crude method of assessment provides limited insight into overall cardiovascular well-being. Echocardiography has become increasingly used and incorporated into clinical care. New objective modality assessments of cardiovascular status continue to evolve and are being evaluated and incorporated into clinical care. In this review article, we will discuss some of the recent advances in objective assessment of cardiovascular well-being, including the concept of multimodal monitoring. Sophisticated haemodynamic monitoring systems are being developed, including mechanisms of data acquisition and analysis. Their incorporation into clinical care represents an exciting next stage in the management of the infant with cardiovascular compromise.

  • neonatology
  • hypotension
  • echocardiography
  • shock

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  • Funding This work was supported by the EU FP7/2007–2013 under grant agreement no. 260777 (The HIP Trial). This work was also supported by a Science Foundation Ireland research award (INFANT-12/RC/2272).

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent Not obtained.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.