NICE supports use of cardiac output monitor

NICE has published final guidance supporting the use by the NHS of a new cardiac output monitor during major or high-risk surgery.

The final guidance from the Medical Technologies Advisory Committee (MTAC) confirms the approval of the CardioQ-ODM system from Deltex Medical published in draft NICE guidance in October 2010.

CardioQ-ODM is used to assess cardiac output in order to help the surgeon optimise blood flow during an operation. A single-use probe is inserted into the oesophagus via the mouth or nose, and the device generates a low-frequency ultrasound signal to determine blood flow.

MTAC found that using CardioQ-ODM instead of a central venous catheter during the operation reduces average hospital stay by two days and reduces average operation cost by £1,100, as well as reducing the risk of post-operative complications.

The report supports the use of CardioQ-ODM during major or high-risk surgery or other surgery where invasive cardiac monitoring is required.

However, MTAC was unable to support the routine use of CardioQ-ODM in the critical care environment. The committee said further research was needed to compare CardioQ-ODM with other methods of cardiac output monitoring during critical care, and noted that trials are ongoing.

Dr Carole Longson, Director of the NICE Centre for Health Technology Evaluation, said: “We are delighted to advise that CardioQ-ODM should be considered for patients undergoing surgical procedures who would otherwise require invasive cardiac monitoring. This new device offers potential cost savings for the NHS together with improved experiences for patients.

“The Medical Technologies Committee found strong evidence for adopting CardioQ-ODM in the NHS in specific surgical settings, and we hope it will be used consistently to deliver proven clinical and cost benefits.”

Deltex Medical is based in Chichester, West Sussex.