Minimizing work of breathing with continuous positive airway pressure and intermittent mandatory ventilation: an improved continuous low-flow system

D R Hillman, J N Breakey, Y M Lam, W J Noffsinger, K E Finucane

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Abstract

Minimizing work of breathing (WOB) during intermittent mandatory ventilation (IMV) and continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) is important as it facilitates weaning from mechanical ventilation. To minimize WOB, we devised a simple, continuous-flow CPAP-IMV system that uses a weighted, partially filled reservoir bag and operates efficiently at low fresh gas flow (FGF). We compared both the pattern and WOB of our system (FGF at 15 L/min) with a conventional continuous-flow CPAP/IMV system (FGF at 15 and 30 L/min) as well as with two relatively efficient demand-value systems, the Servo 900 B and 900 C. Six healthy male subjects were studied; tidal volumes (VT), flow, mouth pressure, and pleural pressure (Ppl) were measured. Ten breaths, matched for VT, from each subject on each system were selected for analysis. Mechanical WOB was estimated by integrating Ppl with respect to VT. The conventional continuous-flow system was associated with a high work/breath relative to the other systems (p less than .001). The weighted reservoir system was associated with a significantly lower work/breath (p less than .001), its performance approaching that of the Servo 900B. Work/breath was least with the Servo 900C (p less than .001). As breathing frequency was higher with the demand valve than continuous-flow systems (p less than .001), the difference in work/time was minimal between the weighted reservoir bag and demand-valve systems. These systems were all associated with significantly (p less than .001) lower work/time than the conventional system at both FGF.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)665-70
Number of pages6
JournalCritical Care Medicine
Volume15
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - Jul 1987

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