Airway Pressure Release Ventilation (APRV): A Therapy in Search of a Disease?

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Name: American journal of respiratory and critical care medicine
ISSN: 1535-4970


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Medical and Biotech [MESH] Definitions

Application of positive pressure to the inspiratory phase when the patient has an artificial airway in place and is connected to a ventilator.

A technique of respiratory therapy, in either spontaneously breathing or mechanically ventilated patients, in which airway pressure is maintained above atmospheric pressure throughout the respiratory cycle by pressurization of the ventilatory circuit. (On-Line Medical Dictionary [Internet]. Newcastle upon Tyne(UK): The University Dept. of Medical Oncology: The CancerWEB Project; c1997-2003 [cited 2003 Apr 17]. Available from:

A type of oropharyngeal airway that provides an alternative to endotracheal intubation and standard mask anesthesia in certain patients. It is introduced into the hypopharynx to form a seal around the larynx thus permitting spontaneous or positive pressure ventilation without penetration of the larynx or esophagus. It is used in place of a facemask in routine anesthesia. The advantages over standard mask anesthesia are better airway control, minimal anesthetic gas leakage, a secure airway during patient transport to the recovery area, and minimal postoperative problems.

Evaluation, planning, and use of a range of procedures and airway devices for the maintenance or restoration of a patient's ventilation.

Non-therapeutic positive end-expiratory pressure occurring frequently in patients with severe airway obstruction. It can appear with or without the administration of external positive end-expiratory pressure (POSITIVE-PRESSURE RESPIRATION). It presents an important load on the inspiratory muscles which are operating at a mechanical disadvantage due to hyperinflation. Auto-PEEP may cause profound hypotension that should be treated by intravascular volume expansion, increasing the time for expiration, and/or changing from assist mode to intermittent mandatory ventilation mode. (From Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine, 12th ed, p1127)

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