Effects of tilt on cerebral hemodynamics measured by NeoDoppler in healthy neonates
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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Background: Today, there are conflicting descriptions of how neonates respond to tilt. Examining physiologic responses of cerebral blood flow velocities (BFVs) in challenging situations like a tilt requires equipment that can cope with positional changes. We aimed to characterize how healthy term neonates respond to mild cerebral hemodynamic stress induced by a 90° tilt test using the recently developed NeoDoppler ultrasound system. Methods: A small ultrasound probe was fixated to the neonatal fontanel by a cap, and measured cerebral BFV in healthy neonates during and after a 90° head-up tilt test, five min in total, at their first and second day of life. Unsupervised k-means cluster analysis was used to characterize common responses. Results: Fifty-six ultrasound recordings from 36 healthy term neonates were analyzed. We identified five distinct, immediate responses that were related to specific outcomes in BFV, heart rate, and pulsatility index the next two min. Among 20 neonates with two recordings, 13 presented with different responses in the two tests. Conclusions: Instant changes in cerebral BFV were detected during the head-up tilt tests, and the cluster analysis identified five different hemodynamic responses. Continuous recordings revealed that the differences between groups persisted two min after tilt.