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The United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention replaced their longstanding ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAP) definitions with ventilator-associated event (VAE) definitions in 2013. Controversy abounds as to whether VAE definitions are potentially suitable to serve as quality indicators for ICUs. On the pro side, VAE definitions overcome many of the weaknesses of traditional VAP surveillance. VAE definitions are objective, reproducible, electronically computable, and strongly predict poor o...
In patients with ventilator-associated pneumonia, systemic use of antibiotics is the cornerstone of medical management. Supplemental use of aerosolized antibiotics with intravenous antibiotics in both experimental and clinical studies has been shown to have the following pharmacologic benefits: (1) aerosolized antibiotics reach the infected lung parenchyma without crossing the pulmonary alveolar capillary barrier; (2) aerosolized antibiotics increase anti-bacterial efficacy through increased local antibioti...
Weaning from mechanical ventilation involves the reduction or withdrawal of ventilatory support in proportion to the patient's ability to sustain spontaneous ventilation. Protocolized weaning has been shown to reduce weaning duration; however, its weakness lies in the reliance on human intervention. Automated weaning is theoretically superior to manual weaning because of its ability to rapidly recognize deviations from desired behavior and enforce compliance with a standardized weaning strategy unencumbered...
Airway pressure release ventilation (APRV) was originally described as a mode to treat lung-injured patients with the goal to maintain a level of airway pressure that would not depress the cardiac function, deliver mechanical breaths without excessive airway pressure, and to allow unrestricted spontaneous ventilation. Indeed, based on its design, APRV has technological features that serve the goals of safety and comfort. Animal studies suggest that APRV leads to alveolar stability and recruitment which resu...
It has been shown that mechanical ventilation by itself can cause lung injury and affect outcomes. Ventilator-induced lung injury is associated with high tidal volumes in lungs afflicted with ARDS. However, the question is: Do high tidal volumes have this same effect in normal lungs or lungs that have respiratory compromise stemming from something other than ARDS? Many clinicians believe that a tidal volume strategy of 6 mL/kg predicted body weight should be standard practice in all patients receiving mecha...
High-frequency oscillatory ventilation (HFOV) can improve ventilation-perfusion matching without excessive alveolar tidal stretching or collapse-reopening phenomenon. This is an attractive feature in the ventilation of patients with ARDS. However, two recent large multi-center trials of HFOV failed to show benefits in this patient population. The following review addresses whether, in view of these trails, HFOV should be abandoned in the adult population?
Oxygen is both lifesaving and toxic. Appropriate use of oxygen aims to provide a balance between the two effects. Although local oxygen toxicity to the lung is well accepted, recent evidence has called into question the negative consequences of hyperoxemia in other organ beds. Hyperoxia following cardiac arrest, traumatic brain injury, and stroke has been shown to worsen outcomes. The role of hyperoxemia in mechanically ventilated patients, in the face of non-toxic inspired oxygen concentrations, is less cl...
For the past 4 decades, the prone position has been employed as an occasional rescue option for patients with severe hypoxemia unresponsive to conventional measures applied in the supine orientation. Proning offers a high likelihood of significantly improved arterial oxygenation to well selected patients, but until the results of a convincing randomized trial were published, its potential to reduce mortality risk remained in serious doubt. Proning does not benefit patients of all disease severities and stag...
Movement of the mechanically ventilated patient may be for a routine procedure or medical emergency. The risks of transport seem manageable, but the memory of a respiratory-related catastrophe still gives many practitioners pause. The risk/benefit ratio of transport must be assessed before movement. During transport of the ventilated patients, should we always use a transport ventilator? What is the risk of using manual ventilation? How are PEEP and FIO2 altered? Is there an impact on the ability to trigger...
Intermittent mandatory ventilation (IMV) was introduced nearly 50 years ago. Despite the initial fanfare and early adoption by many, the role of IMV continues to be questioned. The use of small tidal volumes complicates the application of IMV, and issues with work of breathing, weaning and lack of clear advantages have many calling for a moratorium on its use. Spontaneous breathing, however, has a number of salutatory effects on gas exchange, the distribution of ventilation, and hemodynamics. These issues w...
ICU-acquired weakness is a major complication of critical illness requiring mechanical ventilation. Early mobilization has been shown to decrease the negative consequences of ICU-acquired weakness. However, early mobilization might entail risks to the patient. Additional staffing needs might have a negative financial impact. This review examines whether early mobilization should be routinely performed in mechanically ventilated patients.
Functional residual capacity (FRC) is essentially the alveolar volume and a determinant of both oxygenation and respiratory system compliance (CRS). ARDS decreases FRC, and sufficient PEEP restores FRC; thus, assessments of PEEP by its impact on oxygenation and CRS are intimately linked. PEEP also can ameliorate or aggravate ventilator-induced lung injury. Therefore, it can be argued that PEEP should be titrated primarily by its impact on CRS The pro position argues that the heterogeneous nature of lung inj...
Mechanically assisted coughing with mechanical in-exsufflation (MI-E) is recommended for noninvasive management of respiratory secretions in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). To improve the effectiveness of the technique, a new device combining MI-E with high-frequency oscillations (HFO) has been developed. This work aimed to assess the effect of HFO on the cough peak flow generated by MI-E in medically stable subjects with ALS.
The goal of this study was to evaluate the effects of resistance training on subjects with COPD.