Predicting Central Venous Pressure by Measuring Femoral Venous Diameter Using Ultrasonography



The objective of this exploratory study was to find out the correlation of femoral vein diameter (FVD) to central venous pressure (CVP) measurements and to derive a prediction equation to help ascertain the fluid volume status in a critical patient.

Patients and methods

This was a single-centered prospective cohort study designed and conducted by the critical care department of Shifa International hospital in Islamabad, Pakistan. Patients were enrolled from the medical and surgical intensive care units. The inclusion criteria consisted of patients > 18 years of age, and an intrathoracic central venous catheterization (CVC) in place for producing CVP waveform through the transducer. Patients having contraindications to CVP placement and those unable to lie supine were excluded from the study. Critical Care fellows with sufficient training in performing venous ultrasonography measured the FVD. They were blinded to the CVP values of the same patients.


The study included 108 patients. Among these 70/108 (64.8%) were males. Mean age was 53.85 (SD=16.74). The CVP and femoral vein diameter were measured in all patients. Mean CVP was 9.89 cmH2O (SD=3.46) and mean femoral vein diameter was 0.92 cm (SD=0.27). Multiple regression was used to generate a prediction model. FVD, age and sex of the patient were used as predictor variables to predict CVP diameter. The model was statistically significant with a p-value of < 0.000 and an F-value of 104.806. R-squared value for this model came out to be 0.744, thus the model was able to explain about 74.4% of the variance in the values observed for CVP. When controlled for age and sex, FVD was found highly correlated with CVP diameter with a p-value of < 0.000. A regression equation was derived that can be used to generate predicted values of CVP in millimeters of mercury with an R-square of 0.745 if FVD in centimeters is provided; CVP (cmH2O) = -0.039 + 10.718* FVD.


FVD was found highly correlated to CVP measurements and it suggests an alternate non-invasive method of ascertaining the volume status in the critically ill.


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Shoaib Saadat

Renal Registrar, Data Scientist, Clinical Researcher

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