CARDIOVASCULAR complications have been reported following gastric hypothermia. The balloon circulating a coolant in the distended stomach is separated from the apex of the heart only by the diaphragm. The neck of the balloon is fixed in the lower esophagus, and cooling posterior to the heart occurs concomitantly.
Reynolds1 reported two patients having paroxysmal auricular fibrillation shortly after gastric freezing. Auricular fibrillation occurred in a 67-year-old man with myocardial ischemia as a complication of gastric freezing in a series of 22 patients treated by Doyle and Williams.2 Bernstein et al3 and Heineken and associates4 reported transient T-wave and ST segment changes concomitant with gastric freezing. Rose and Harrell5 found atrial fibrillation to occur in three and paroxysmal auricular tachycardia in one of 26 patients subjected to gastric hypothermia.
Studies by Peter et al6 of the physiologic effects of gastric hypothermia in the dog showed
Walker LG, Jones FC, Thoroughman JC, Gilbert JW. Circumflex CoronaryA Comparison of Gastric Freezing. Arch Surg. 1968;96(3):328-330. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1968.01330210006002