The possible risk for strokes complicating cardiac surgery in patients with intraoperative hypothermia

Isabelle Korn-Lubetzki, Israel Steiner, Avraham Oren, Rachel Tauber, Bettina Steiner-Birmanns, Daniel Bitran

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: The effect of hypothermia as a possible neuroprotective tool on the outcome of cardiac surgery is still controversial. Methods: We retrospectively assessed all patients who underwent cardiac surgery within a 14-year period and compared patients with and without postoperative stroke. Results: Stroke occurred more frequently in patients who underwent valve repair/replacement combined with coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) than in patients who had CABG alone (p = 0.0002). All strokes (1.4%) were ischemic and mostly of large-vessel etiology. All patients with stroke had intraoperative minimal temperature <34°C. More patients in this group than in the group without stroke had an intraoperative minimal temperature <30°C (p = 0.01). Stepwise multivariate analysis of all pre- and intraoperative parameters identified significant risk factors for stroke: hypertension, diabetes mellitus and previous stroke as preoperative risk factors, but only lower minimal temperature as a significant intraoperative risk factor (p = 0.03; odds ratio 1.080/1°C, 95% confidence interval 1.004-1.152). The mean intraoperative temperature was 28 ± 4°C in patients who developed stroke and 30 ± 3°C in patients without stroke. Conclusions: Intraoperative hypothermia around 28°C might be harmful and associated with increased risk for postsurgical stroke.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)602-605
Number of pages4
JournalCerebrovascular Diseases
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Cardiac surgery
  • Hypothermia
  • Intraoperative temperature
  • Stroke


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