1. Chavez, Jose MSN, RN, ACCNS-AG, CCRN, CVRN-BC, AACC
  2. Glaser, Sara MSN, RN, CRNA
  3. Krom, Zachary MSN, RN, CCRN, CHSE, NPD-BC


The aim of this article is to review the literature on lactate measurements in critical care and the current devices used to measure noninvasively and invasively. Lactate measurements are currently being used as a way to measure the severity of sepsis. Intravascular and subcutaneous devices are some of the ways that these measurements can be continuously gathered as well as point-of-care blood tests. New devices that are being currently used with athletes can measure lactate noninvasively. As the advance of technology continues to move at a fast speed, an evaluation of literature is needed to assess the continued support of lactate and the ability to move to noninvasive devices in critical care. A literature search was conducted in February 2020, using PubMed, CINAHL, MEDLINE, and Cochrane databases. There remains support for the use of lactate and continuous lactate monitoring; however, currently, noninvasive devices are not available for the critical care environment. There are invasive techniques that are being used to measure lactate continuously in critical care and are beneficial for the cardiac surgery population. The review of the literature on continuous lactate measurements produced evidence that supports prediction of morbidity and mortality. There are no current noninvasive lactate measurement devices that can be used in critical care, but they are being currently used in the athletic community. Invasive continuous lactate measurement devices are currently being used and beneficial.