Pulmonary complications are common after cardiac surgery and are closely related to postoperative heart failure and adverse outcomes. Lung ultrasonography (LUS) is currently a widely accepted diagnostic approach with well-established methodology, nomenclature, accuracy, and prognostic value in numerous clinical conditions. The advantages of LUS are universally recognized and include bedside applicability, high diagnostic sensitivity and reproducibility, no radiation exposure, and low cost. However, routine perioperative ultrasonography during cardiac surgery generally is limited to echocardiography, diagnosis of pleural effusion, and as a diagnostic tool for postoperative complications in different organs, and few studies have explored the clinical outcomes in relation to LUS among cardiac patients. This narrative review presents the clinical evidence regarding LUS application in intensive care and during the perioperative period for cardiac surgery. Furthermore, this review describes the methodology and the diagnostic and prognostic accuracies of LUS. A summary of ongoing clinical trials evaluating the clinical outcomes related to LUS also is provided. Finally, this review discusses the rationale for upcoming clinical research regarding whether routine use of LUS can modify current intensive care practice and potentially affect the clinical outcomes after cardiac surgery.
Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
- Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine