Point-of-care blood gas analyzers have an impact on the acceptance of donor lungs for transplantation

Gary F. Marklin, Robert Bresler, Rajat Dhar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


An organ donor PaO2 above 40 kPa is generally required for lung transplantation. Point-of-care (POC) blood gas analyzers are commonly used by organ procurement organizations (OPO) but may underestimate the PaO2 at high levels. We hypothesized that changing to a more accurate blood gas analyzer would result in additional lungs transplanted. All PaO2 measurements on organ donors managed at one OPO’s recovery center were performed on an i-STAT POC analyzer prior to October 2015, and on a GEM 4000 subsequently. For 24 weeks, all blood gases were tested simultaneously on both analyzers. We compared lung outcomes of 147 donors in the year prior to this change (using the i-STAT) with 56 donors in the 24-week study period (using the GEM 4000 for lung allocation). When the PaO2 was above 40 kPa, the i-STAT PaO2 was 7.2 kPa lower on average than the GEM 4000. When the GEM PaO2 measured between 40 and 50 kPa, the corresponding i-STAT PaO2 value registered less than 40 kPa 25 out of 48 times (52%), with an average difference of 7.3 kPa (SD = 2.9). The rate of lungs transplanted using the GEM 4000 was 48% compared with 35% in the year prior using the i-STAT (p =.11), with equivalent recipient outcomes. The i-STAT analyzer underestimated the PaO2 above 40 kPa and changing to a more accurate PaO2 analyzer may increase lungs transplanted.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)623-629
Number of pages7
JournalScandinavian Journal of Clinical and Laboratory Investigation
Issue number8
StatePublished - 2020


  • GEM 4000
  • Lung transplantation
  • PaO2
  • blood gas analyzer
  • i-STAT
  • organ donor
  • organ procurement
  • oxygen
  • point-of-care


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