Passive leg raising test

Not to be confused with Straight leg raise.
Passive leg raising test

In medicine, the passive leg raising test is a bedside test to evaluate the need for further fluid resuscitation in critically ill patients.[1]

This test involves raising the legs of a patient (without their active participation), which causes gravity to pull blood from the legs, thus increasing circulatory volume available to the heart (cardiac preload) by around 150-300 milliliters, depending on the amount of venous reservoir.[1] The real-time effects of this maneuver on hemodynamic parameters such as blood pressure and heart rate are used to guide the decision whether or not more fluid will be beneficial.[2][3] The assessment is easier when invasive monitoring is present (such as an arterial catheter).

The maneuver might be reinforced in a clinical setting by moving the patient's bed from a semi-recumbent position to a recumbent position with the legs raised. This is theorised to cause an additional mobilisation of blood from the gastrointestinal circulation.[4][5] The physiology of assessing fluid responsiveness via passive leg raise requires increasing systemic venous return without altering cardiac function - a form of functional hemodynamic monitoring.[6]

Several studies showed that this measure is a better predictor of response to rapid fluid loading than other tests such as respiratory variation in pulse pressure or echocardiographic markers.[5][7][8][9]


  1. 1 2 Monnet X, Teboul JL (April 2008). "Passive leg raising". Intensive Care Med. 34 (4): 659–63. doi:10.1007/s00134-008-0994-y. PMID 18214429.
  2. Boulain T, Achard JM, Teboul JL, Richard C, Perrotin D, Ginies G (April 2002). "Changes in BP induced by passive leg raising predict response to fluid loading in critically ill patients". Chest. 121 (4): 1245–52. doi:10.1378/chest.121.4.1245. PMID 11948060.
  3. Maizel J, Airapetian N, Lorne E, Tribouilloy C, Massy Z, Slama M (July 2007). "Diagnosis of central hypovolemia by using passive leg raising". Intensive Care Med. 33 (7): 1133–8. doi:10.1007/s00134-007-0642-y. PMID 17508202.
  4. Jabot J, Teboul JL, Richard C, Monnet X (September 2008). "Passive leg raising for predicting fluid responsiveness: importance of the postural change". Intensive Care Med. 35 (1): 85–90. doi:10.1007/s00134-008-1293-3. PMID 18795254.
  5. 1 2 Teboul JL, Monnet X (June 2008). "Prediction of volume responsiveness in critically ill patients with spontaneous breathing activity". Curr Opin Crit Care. 14 (3): 334–9. doi:10.1097/MCC.0b013e3282fd6e1e. PMID 18467896.
  7. Monnet X, Rienzo M, Osman D, et al. (May 2006). "Passive leg raising predicts fluid responsiveness in the critically ill". Crit. Care Med. 34 (5): 1402–7. doi:10.1097/01.CCM.0000215453.11735.06. PMID 16540963.
  8. Lamia B, Ochagavia A, Monnet X, Chemla D, Richard C, Teboul JL (July 2007). "Echocardiographic prediction of volume responsiveness in critically ill patients with spontaneously breathing activity". Intensive Care Med. 33 (7): 1125–32. doi:10.1007/s00134-007-0646-7. PMID 17508199.
  9. Lafanechère A, Pène F, Goulenok C, et al. (2006). "Changes in aortic blood flow induced by passive leg raising predict fluid responsiveness in critically ill patients". Crit Care. 10 (5): R132. doi:10.1186/cc5044. PMC 1751046Freely accessible. PMID 16970817.

See also

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