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Laboratory and Animal Investigations |

A Morphologic Study of Long-term Retention of Fluorocarbon After Liquid Ventilation*

C. Ian Hood, MB, ChB; Jerome H. Modell, MD, FCCP
Author and Funding Information

*From the University of Florida College of Medicine, Gainesville, FL.

Correspondence to: Jerome H. Modell, MD, FCCP, Department of Anesthesiology, PO Box 100254, Gainesville, FL 32610-0254; e-mail: modell@dean.med.ufl.edu



Chest. 2000;118(5):1436-1440. doi:10.1378/chest.118.5.1436
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Study objectives: To determine how long perfluorinated hydrocarbons remain in the lung after they are used for lung ventilation in dogs, and to determine if residual perfluorinated hydrocarbons cause structural alteration or an inflammatory reaction of the lung.

Design: Adult dogs were anesthetized and received ventilation with oxygenated perfluorinated hydrocarbon liquid. Morphologic studies of tissue from the lungs of these dogs were performed at intervals of a few minutes to 10 years after reconversion to breathing gas.

Setting: University College of Medicine.

Participants: Adult mongrel and beagle dogs.

Interventions: Anesthetized adult dogs breathed oxygenated liquid fluorocarbons for 1 h and then were reconverted to breathing air. Three fluorocarbons, FX-80 (C8F16O; 3M Company; St. Paul, MN), Caroxin-D (C10F22O2; P-1D; Allied Chemical Company; Morristown, NJ), and Caroxin-F (C9F20O; P-12F; Allied Chemical Company), were used. Morphologic studies of the lungs of these animals were performed immediately after restoration of air breathing and at intervals for up to 10 years. Not all animals were studied at each time interval.

Measurements and results: A transient, acute inflammatory reaction was followed by a massive influx of macrophages, which were at first intra-alveolar and later interstitial, especially around vessels and bronchioles. Fluorocarbons remained in the lung in diminishing amounts for at least 5 years, as evidenced by persistent vacuolated macrophages in the alveoli, interstitium, and hilar lymph nodes; fluorocarbon was also detected in these tissues by chemical assays. In no case was there fibrosis or any other structural alteration associated with the residual fluorocarbon, which suggests that it was inert. At 10 years, no evidence of residual fluorocarbon was seen morphologically.


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