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Vic Convertino Discusses New Technology for Early Diagnosis on Shock at EMS Today 2015

Vic Convertino, PhD, senior scientist for the US Army Combat Casualty Care Research Program, and well known for his state-of-the-art research focused on the understanding of the physiology of blood loss and hemorrhagic shock in humans, presented on the measurement of the body’s ability to compensate for blood loss with the use of a novel technology called the compensatory reserve index (CRI).

Convertino presented evidence that the “bias” of measuring standard vital signs for determining continues to be a poor indicator of patient status, particularly during hemorrhage. While vital signs can change very little during the early compensatory phase of blood loss, he demonstrated how the CRI provides early identification of hemorrhage well in advance of developing imminent shock.

Convertino finished his presentation by showing the audience a simple pulse oximeter that contained a CRI machine-learning algorithm that is capable of “learning” the blood volume status of each individual patient.

Some additional key points made by Convertino were:

  • Why current assessments for shock using standard vital signs predict decompensation too late.
  • What is needed to develop the capability to measure compensatory reserve.
  • How features of the arterial waveform (PPG) the total integrated reserve to compensate for blood loss.
  • How the physiology differs between individuals with high versus low tolerance to blood loss.
  • How measurement of the CRI provides individualized patient assessment.
  • How measurement of the CRI can provide goal-directed accurate resuscitation.