Hypertonic resuscitation improves neuronal and behavioral outcomes after traumatic brain injury plus hemorrhage

Stacy L. Sell, Marcela A. Avila, Guangxiang Yu, Leoncio Vergara, Donald S. Prough, James J. Grady, Douglas S. DeWitt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Scopus citations

Abstract

BACKGROUND: Resuscitation with hypertonic saline or hypertonic saline plus l-arginine acutely improves cerebral blood flow after traumatic brain injury (TBI) followed by hemorrhagic hypotension. The authors investigated whether hypertonic saline or hypertonic l-arginine would improve long-term neuronal survival and behavioral outcomes 15 days after TBI and hemorrhagic hypotension. METHODS: Mean arterial pressure, arterial blood gases, pH, plasma glucose, hematocrit, and hemoglobin were measured in male Sprague-Dawley rats before and after moderate (2.0 atm) fluid percussion TBI. Rats were assigned to one of six groups: (1) sham TBI, (2) hemorrhage only, (3) TBI only, (4) TBI plus hemorrhage and resuscitation with 0.9% saline, (5) TBI plus hemorrhage and resuscitation with hypertonic saline (7.5%), or (6) TBI plus hemorrhage and resuscitation with l-arginine (100 mg/kg) in hypertonic saline. On postinjury days 1-5, vestibulomotor function was assessed using beam balance and beam walking tasks. On postinjury days 11-15, spatial memory function was assessed using the Morris water maze. After behavioral testing, neuronal counting was performed bilaterally on specific hippocampal regions. RESULTS: Groups receiving hypertonic saline (P < 0.05, day 15 vs. day 11) or hypertonic l-arginine (P < 0.05, days 13-15 vs. day 11) showed improved performance over time on the Morris water maze, as well as significantly improved neuronal survival in the contralateral hippocampus (P < 0.05, hypertonic saline or hypertonic l-arginine vs. normal saline) compared with untreated TBI or normal saline-treated TBI plus hemorrhage groups. CONCLUSIONS: Hypertonic saline and hypertonic l-arginine were both effective at promoting long-term neuronal survival and behavioral recovery. The slightly earlier improvement in Morris water maze performance in the hypertonic l-arginine group warrants further studies to determine whether higher doses of l-arginine provide additional improvement. This study supports the therapeutic benefits of hypertonic resuscitation after TBI plus hemorrhagic hypotension.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)873-881
Number of pages9
JournalAnesthesiology
Volume108
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - May 2008

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine

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