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Intensive Care Medicine Experimental

, 2:26

First Online: 23 October 2014Received: 09 August 2014Accepted: 27 September 2014


BackgroundThe hydraulic behavior of the renal compartment is poorly understood. In particular, the role of the renal capsule on the intrarenal pressure has not been thoroughly addressed to date. We hypothesized that pressure and volume in the renal compartment are not linearly related, similar to other body compartments.

MethodsThe pressure-volume curve of the renal compartment was obtained by injecting fluid into the renal pelvis and recording the rise in intrarenal pressure in six anesthetized and mechanically ventilated piglets, using a catheter Camino 4B® inserted into the renal parenchyma.

ResultsIn healthy kidneys, pressure has a highly nonlinear dependence on the injected volume, as revealed by an exponential fit to the data R = 0.92. On the contrary, a linear relation between pressure and volume is observed in decapsulated kidneys. We propose a biomechanical model for the renal capsule that is able to explain the nonlinear pressure-volume dependence for moderate volume increases.

ConclusionsWe have presented experimental evidence and a theoretical model that supports the existence of a renal compartment. The mechanical role of the renal capsule investigated in this work may have important implications in elucidating the role of decompressive capsulotomy in reducing the intrarenal pressure in acutely injured kidneys.

KeywordsCompartment syndrome Renal capsule Intrarenal pressure Kidney biomechanics AbbreviationsAKIacute kidney injury

RRrespiratory rate

PaCO2partial pressure of carbon dioxide

PaO2partial pressure of oxygen

Electronic supplementary materialThe online version of this article doi:10.1186-s40635-014-0026-x contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.

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Author: Pablo Cruces - Camila Salas - Pablo Lillo - Tatiana Salomon - Felipe Lillo - Daniel E Hurtado


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