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BioMed Research International
Volume 2015, Article ID 810797, 9 pages
Clinical Study

Feasibility of Bioelectrical Impedance Spectroscopy Measurement before and after Thoracentesis

1Department of Cardiology, Pneumology, Angiology and Intensive Care Medicine, University Hospital, RWTH Aachen University, Pauwelsstraße 30, 52074 Aachen, Germany
2Philips Chair for Medical Information Technology, RWTH Aachen University, Schinkelstraße 2, 52062 Aachen, Germany

Received 7 December 2014; Accepted 19 February 2015

Academic Editor: Marvin I. Schwarz

Copyright © 2015 Matthias Daniel Zink et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Background. Bioelectrical impedance spectroscopy is applied to measure changes in tissue composition. The aim of this study was to evaluate its feasibility in measuring the fluid shift after thoracentesis in patients with pleural effusion. Methods. 45 participants (21 with pleural effusion and 24 healthy subjects) were included. Bioelectrical impedance was analyzed for “Transthoracic,” “Foot to Foot,” “Foot to Hand,” and “Hand to Hand” vectors in low and high frequency domain before and after thoracentesis. Healthy subjects were measured at a single time point. Results. The mean volume of removed pleural effusion was  mL. The “Foot to Foot,” “Hand to Hand,” and “Foot to Hand” vector indicated a trend for increased bioelectrical impedance after thoracentesis. Values for the low frequency domain in the “Transthoracic” vector increased significantly (). A moderate correlation was observed between the amount of removed fluid and impedance change in the low frequency domain using the “Foot to Hand” vector (). Conclusion. Bioelectrical impedance changes in correlation with the thoracic fluid level. It was feasible to monitor significant fluid shifts and loss after thoracentesis in the “Transthoracic” vector by means of bioelectrical impedance spectroscopy. The trial is registered with Registration Numbers IRB EK206/11 and NCT01778270.