Compare and contrast the measurement (40% of marks) and interpretation (60% of marks) of both central venous and mixed venous oxygen saturations.

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College Answer

Many candidates did not appreciate that ScvO2 refers to SVC / RA junction venous oximetry and not femoral or peripheral venous oximetry. Methods of measurement such as co-oximetry and reflectance spectrophotometry needed to be explained. Marks were awarded for the normal values. Discussion of the relationship between ScvO2 and SmvO2 and changes during shock attracted marks. Better answers quoted the modified Fick equation and related this to cardiac output and factors affecting oxygen consumption versus delivery.