Figure 4:

What two abnormalities are shown in the pressure tracing? 

[Click here to toggle visibility of the answers]

College Answer

d) Abnormalities 
• Early balloon inflation 
• Early balloon deflation



This is a pattern recognition question which relies on the candidate's familiarity with troubleshooting equipment.

Unfortunately, the college has removed the images, so nobody can recognise the patterns.

The depicted pattern in (d) was probably an IABP waveform where the balloon inflated and deflated too early.

The IABP chapter has some exhaustingly detailed discussions about what this means for your myocardial workload.

As a reminder, that waveform looks like this:

early IABP deflation fails to improve LV afterload


Directly relevant:

Maquet educational materails: IABP timing pocket reference guide

Mildly interesting:

Papaioannou, Theodoros G., and Christodoulos Stefanadis. "Basic principles of the intraaortic balloon pump and mechanisms affecting its performance."ASAIO journal 51.3 (2005): 296-300.