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March 1987

Galactose Elimination Kinetics in SepsisCorrelations of Hepatic Blood Flow With Function

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Surgery, Case Western Reserve University Hospitals and Veterans Administration Medical Center, Cleveland. Drs Schirmer and Townsend are Dudley P. Allen Research Fellows in Surgery at Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland.

Arch Surg. 1987;122(3):349-354. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1987.01400150103020

• To study hepatic blood flow with clearance techniques during sepsis, it is essential to work within the limitations of the test being applied. Based on galactose elimination kinetics, this study validates galactose clearance at low concentrations as an estimate of effective hepatic blood flow in a rat peritonitis model of cecal ligation and puncture. Hepatic function as determined by galactose elimination capacity fell 25% at ten hours after induction of peritonitis, which correlated closely with the 20% reduction in effective hepatic blood flow at the same time point despite a normal cardiac output. The pattern of reduced flow and reduced function is consistent with intrahepatic flow redistribution. Inadequate flow at the microvascular level with secondary cellular injury may explain the liver dysfunction observed during sepsis.

(Arch Surg 1987;122:349-354)