Hepatic cryoablation-induced acute lung injury: Pulmonary hemodynamic and permeability effects in a sheep model

William C. Chapman, Jacob P. Debelak, Timothy S. Blackwell, Kim A. Gainer, John W. Christman, C. Wright Pinson, Kenneth L. Brigham, Richard E. Parker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

45 Scopus citations


Hypothesis: Hepatic cryoablation of 30% to 35% or more of liver parenchyma in a sheep model results in eicosanoid and nuclear factor-κB (NF- κB)-mediated changes in pulmonary hemodynamics and lung permeability. Setting: Laboratory. Interventions: At initial thoracotomy, catheters were placed in the main pulmonary artery, left atrium, right carotid artery, and efferent duct of the caudal mediastinal lymph node for subsequent monitoring in adult sheep. After a 1- to 2-week period of recovery, animals underwent laparotomy and left-lobe cryoablation (approximately 35% by volume) with subsequent awake monitoring and on postoperative days 1 to 3. Main Outcome Measures: Cryoablation-induced lung permeability and hemodynamic changes were compared with baseline values in sheep that underwent instrumentation. Similarly handled sheep underwent resection of a similar volume of hepatic parenchyma or had pulmonary artery pressure increases induced by mechanical left atrial obstruction. Activation of NF-κB was assessed with electrophoretic mobility shift assay, and serum thromboxane levels were measured with mass spectroscopy. Results: Cryoablation resulted in acutely increased mean pulmonary (20 to 35 cm water) and systemic pressures, which returned to baseline at 24 hours with no change in cardiac output. Serum thromboxane levels increased 30 minutes after cryoablation (9-fold) and returned to baseline at 24 hours. Activation of NF-κB was present in liver and lung tissue by 30 minutes after cryoablation. Lung lymph-plasma protein clearance markedly exceeded the expected increase from pulmonary pressures alone, and increased lymph-plasma protein ratio persisted after pulmonary artery pressures normalized. Similar changes were not associated with 35% hepatic resection. Conclusions: This study demonstrates that 35% hepatic cryoablation results in an acute but transient increase in pulmonary artery pressure that may be mediated by increased thromboxane levels. Increases in pulmonary capillary permeability are not accounted for by pressure changes alone, and may be a result of NF-κB-mediated inflammatory mechanisms. These data show that cryosurgery causes pathophysiological changes similar to those observed with endotoxin and other systemic inflammatory stimuli.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)667-673
Number of pages7
JournalArchives of Surgery
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2000


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