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Open heart patients are subject to high risks of central nervous system (CNS) complications from cardiopulmonary bypass (CPB), depending on the type of procedure. These complications arise mostly from atherosclerotic, thrombotic and gaseous micro emboli entering the brain rather than oxygen toxicity. Hyperbaric patients are treated with much higher levels of oxygen for comparable periods of time and have few CNS complications. Patients on CPB may benefit from using the oxygenator to transform nitrogen bubbles to oxygen bubbles as they exit the pump. Furthermore any nitrogen bubbles already trapped in the cerebral vasculature would be more rapidly removed if hyperoxia were used during CPB.

Perfusion Theory is an educational platform for the Oxygen Pressure Field Theory (OPFT). August Krogh’s theoretical concept of the oxygen pressure field is explained and then applied to clinical applications in perfusion practice.