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During the treatment of 26 shocked patients, measurements were made of the central blood to peripheral skin temperature gradient. No significant correlation was found between this gradient and cardiac index (CI), or systemic vascular resistance (SVR) or its index (SVRI). There was no significant correlation between the change in gradient and the changes in CI, SVR or SVRI in any single patient. We conclude that it is incorrect to base any judgment of a patient's hemodynamic status on a core/peripheral temperature gradient during shock, and it is irrational to initiate therapy based on this measurement.

(C) Williams & Wilkins 1987. All Rights Reserved.