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Editorials |

Monitoring Tissue Oxygenation : The Quest Continues

David Roy Dantzker, MD, FCCP
Author and Funding Information

Affiliations: Bronx, NY 
 ,  Dr. Dantzker is Professor of Medicine, Albert Einstein College of Medicine.

Correspondence to: David R. Dantzker, MD, FCCP, 64 East 86th St, New York, NY 10028; e-mail: david@dantzker.com



Chest. 2001;120(3):701-702. doi:10.1378/chest.120.3.701
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In 1997, I wrote an editorial for CHEST regarding the search for a method to monitor the adequacy of tissue oxygenation that could be used by clinicians to guide the treatment of physiologically unstable patients.1 At that time, I likened this to the quest for the Holy Grail. Here it is 4 years later and, like the search for the grail, the goal appears to remain tantalizingly out of reach. While elusiveness is a wonderfully romantic part of the fascination with a quest, it is disappointing that more progress has not been made. The article by Marik in this issue of CHEST (see page 923) provides additional evidence that monitoring changes in luminal Pco2, reflecting the interstitial hydrogen ion concentration, signals a change in overall homeostasis that correlates with a bad outcome. This additional proof of principal is welcomed, but begs the question of whether this variable can be put to use in a clinically useful and reliable manner.

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