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The predictive value of resting heart rate following osmotherapy in brain injury: back to basics

Mahsa Hasanpour Mir1, Fardin Yousefshahi2, Mohammad Abdollahi3, Arezoo Ahmadi4, Atabak Nadjafi4 and Mojtaba Mojtahedzadeh4*

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Pharmacotherapy, Faculty of Pharmacy, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran

2 Department of Anesthesia, Faculty of Medicine, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran

3 Department of Toxicology and Pharmacology, Faculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences Research Center, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran

4 Anesthesiology & Intensive Care Department, School of Medicine, Tehran University of Medical Science and Health Services, Tehran, Iran

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DARU Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences 2012, 20:102  doi:10.1186/2008-2231-20-102

Published: 30 December 2012



The importance of resting heart rate as a prognostic factor was described in several studies. An elevated heart rate is an independent risk factor for adverse cardiovascular events and total mortality in patients with coronary artery disease, chronic heart failure, and the general population. Also heart rate is elevated in the Multi Organ Dysfunction Syndrome (MODS) and the mortality due to MODS is highly correlated with inadequate sinus tachycardia.

To evaluate the value of resting heart rate in predicting mortality in patients with traumatic brain injury along scoring systems like Acute Physiology and Chronic Health Evaluation(APACHE II), Sequential Organ Failure Assessment (SOFA) and Glasgow Coma Score (GCS).


By analyzing data which was collected from an open labeled randomized clinical trial that compared the different means of osmotherapy (mannitol vs bolus or infusion hypertonic saline), heart rate, GCS, APACHE II and SOFA score were measured at baseline and daily for 7 days up to 60 days and the relationship between elevated heart rate and mortality during the first 7 days and 60th day were assessed.


After adjustments for confounding factors, although there was no difference in mean heart rate between either groups of alive and expired patients, however, we have found a relative correlation between 60th day mortality rate and resting heart rate (P=0.07).


Heart rate can be a prognostic factor for estimating mortality rate in brain injury patients along with APACHE II and SOFA scores in patients with brain injury.

Heart rate; APACHE II score; SOFA score; GCS score; Head injury