BMJ Case Reports 2012; doi:10.1136/bcr-2012-007517

Abdominal hypertension characterised by severe haemodynamic changes as a complication of percutanous nephrolithotomy

  1. Omer L Erhan1
  1. 1Department of Anesthesiology and Reanimation, Firat University, Elazig, Turkey
  2. 2Department of Urology, Firat University, Elazig, Turkey
  1. Correspondence to Dr Ayse Belin Ozer, abelinozer{at}


Percutanous nephrolithotomy (PCNL) was performed on a patient in a prone position. During the first hour of intervention, some unwanted haemodynamic complications arose, which included a decrease in systemic blood pressure, an increase in heart rate and an increase in peak inspiratory pressures. Owing to worsening of those unexplained haemodynamic abnormalities, surgery was terminated. As the patient turned from prone to supine position, abdominal distention was noticed. Later, 3 litres of fluid were removed from the abdomen via peritoneal lavage. Upon fluid removal, a dramatic haemodynamic improvement was observed. The problem was thought to have been caused by a technical error in placing the dilator inside the abdomen, which allowed the irrigation fluid to accumulate inside the abdominal cavity. The aim of this presentation is to raise awareness of intra-abdominal hypertension when the aforementioned haemodynamic abnormalities are detected during PCNL. Early detection and treatment may prevent morbidity and mortality in similar cases.

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