Tag Archives: ventilation


Pre-hospital CPAP for pulmonary oedema

The physician-staffed mobile intensive care units of SAMU (Service d’Aide Médicale Urgente) in France provided the location for this randomised controlled trial of CPAP for acute cardiogenic pulmonary oedema.



STUDY OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this randomized controlled trial was to determine the immediate and delayed effects of noninvasive ventilation for patients in acute cardiogenic pulmonary edema (ACPE) in addition to aggressive usual care in a medical prehospital setting.


METHODS: Out-of-hospital patients in severe ACPE were eligible for the study. Patients were randomized to receive either usual care, including conventional optimal treatment with furosemide, oxygen, and high-dose boluses of isosorbide dinitrate plus oxygen, or conventional medications plus out-of-hospital continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP). The primary outcome was the treatment success defined as all of respiratory rate less than 25 breaths per minute and oxygen saturation of greater than 90% at the end of 1-hour study. Secondary end points included death during 30 days after inclusion. Lengths of intensive care unit and hospital stays were also recorded.


RESULTS: In total, 124 patients were enrolled into the study. The 2 groups had similar baseline characteristics. For the primary outcome analysis, 22 (35.5%) of 62 patients were considered as experiencing a treatment success in the usual care group vs 19 (31.7%) of 60 in the CPAP group (P = .65). Seven patients died within 30 days in the usual care group vs 6 in the CPAP group (P = .52). There were no statistically significant differences between the treatment groups for length of stay either in hospital or in the intensive care unit.


CONCLUSION: In the prehospital setting, in spite of its potential advantages for patients in ACPE, CPAP may not be preferred to a strict optimal intravenous treatment.


Continuous positive airway pressure for cardiogenic pulmonary edema: a randomized study
Am J Emerg Med. 2011 Sep;29(7):775-81

Mouth-to-nose breathing

Interesting – mouth to nose breathing was more effective than mouth-to-mouth in simulated resuscitations using anaesthetised, apnoeic patients:



BACKGROUND: The authors hypothesized that mouth ventilation by a resuscitator via the nasal route ensures a more patent airway and more effective ventilation than does ventilation via the oral route and therefore would be the optimal manner to ventilate adult patients in emergencies, such as during cardiopulmonary resuscitation. They tested the hypothesis by comparing the effectiveness of mouth-to-nose breathing (MNB) and mouth-to-mouth breathing (MMB) in anesthetized, apneic, adult subjects without muscle paralysis.


METHODS: Twenty subjects under general anesthesia randomly received MMB and MNB with their heads placed first in a neutral position and then an extended position. A single operator performed MNB and MMB at the target breathing rate of 10 breaths/min, inspiratory:expiratory ratio 1:2 and peak inspiratory airway pressure 24 cm H₂O. A plethysmograph was used to measure the amplitude change during MMB and MNB. The inspiratory and expiratory tidal volumes during MMB and MNB were calculated retrospectively using the calibration curve.


RESULTS: All data are presented as medians (interquartile ranges). The rates of effective ventilation (expired volume > estimated anatomic dead space) during MNB and MMB were 91.1% (42.4-100%) and 43.1% (42.5-100%) (P < 0.001), and expired tidal volume with MMB 130.5 ml (44.0-372.8 ml) was significantly lower than with MNB 324.5 ml (140.8-509.0 ml), regardless of the head position (P < 0.001).


CONCLUSIONS: Direct mouth ventilation delivered exclusively via the nose is significantly more effective than that delivered via the mouth in anesthetized, apneic adult subjects without muscle paralysis. Additional studies are needed to establish whether using this breathing technique during emergency situations will improve patient outcomes.


Effectiveness of breathing through nasal and oral routes in unconscious apneic adult human subjects: a prospective randomized crossover trial
Anesthesiology. 2011 Jul;115(1):129-35

Nitric oxide for right ventricular cardiogenic shock

A case report describes a patient with right ventricular cardiogenic shock due to a dissected right coronary artery1. There was deterioration despite fluid, inotropic and intraaortic balloon pump therapy, followed by improvement with the introduction of inhaled nitric oxide (iNO) at 12 to 15 ppm (a selective pulmonary vasodilator), to the point where vasoactive medication was withdrawn. The cessation of iNO was associated with deterioration which resolved with its reintroduction. It was more gradually withdrawn and the patient made a good recovery.

The rationale for the use of iNO in patients with acute RV heart failure due to MI is afterload reduction without systemic hypotension.

It has been shown to improve haemodynamics in RV MI patients with cardiogenic shock in a previous case series2 (abstract below) in which its effects on pulmonary vasodilation are thought be beneficial. In RV MI with shock increased pulmonary vascular tone is postulated to result from the following mechanisms:

  • A low cardiac output results in a decreased mixed venous blood oxygen content, which enhances pulmonary artery vasoconstriction.
  • The intravenous infusion of alpha-adrenergic vasoconstrictors can contribute to pulmonary vasoconstriction.
  • Mechanical ventilation with positive end-expiratory pressure can increase the pulmonary vascular resistance through compression of the pulmonary vasculature.
  • Interstitial pulmonary edema, which may occur in some patients with coexisting LV dysfunction, can also cause pulmonary constriction


OBJECTIVES: We sought to determine whether or not inhaled nitric oxide (NO) could improve hemodynamic function in patients with right ventricular myocardial infarction (RVMI) and cardiogenic shock (CS).


BACKGROUND: Inhaled NO is a selective pulmonary vasodilator that can decrease right ventricular afterload.


METHODS: Thirteen patients (7 males and 6 females, age 65 +/- 3 years) presenting with electrocardiographic, echocardiographic, and hemodynamic evidence of acute inferior myocardial infarction associated with RVMI and CS were studied. After administration of supplemental oxygen (inspired oxygen fraction [F(i)O(2)] = 1.0), hemodynamic measurements were recorded before, during inhalation of NO (80 ppm at F(i)O(2) = 0.90) for 10 min, and 10 min after NO inhalation was discontinued (F(i)O(2) = 1.0).


RESULTS: Breathing NO decreased the mean right atrial pressure by 12 +/- 3%, mean pulmonary arterial pressure by 13 +/- 2%, and pulmonary vascular resistance by 36 +/- 8% (all p < 0.05). Nitric oxide inhalation increased the cardiac index by 24 +/- 11% and the stroke volume index by 23 +/- 12% (p < 0.05). The NO administration did not change systemic arterial or pulmonary capillary wedge pressures. Contrast echocardiography identified three patients with a patent foramen ovale and right-to-left shunt flow while breathing at F(i)O(2) = 1.0. Breathing NO decreased shunt flow by 56 +/- 5% (p < 0.05) and was associated with markedly improved systemic oxygen saturation.


CONCLUSIONS: Nitric oxide inhalation results in acute hemodynamic improvement when administered to patients with RVMI and CS.


1. Use of inhaled nitric oxide in the treatment of right ventricular myocardial infarction
Am J Emerg Med. 2011 May;29(4):473.e3-5

2. Hemodynamic effects of inhaled nitric oxide in right ventricular myocardial infarction and cardiogenic shock
J Am Coll Cardiol. 2004 Aug 18;44(4):793-8

Paeds BVM for adult resuscitation

Three hand-ventilation systems were used in a simulated adult resuscitation to determine the delivered volumes. The mean minute ventilation delivered by each of the three devices investigated was significantly different, with the paediatric (500-ml) self-inflating bag producing the result most consistent with the guideline.

There is a discrepancy between resuscitation teaching and witnessed clinical practice. Furthermore, deleterious outcomes are associated with hyperventilation. We therefore conducted a manikin-based study of a simulated cardiac arrest to evaluate the ability of three ventilating devices to provide guideline-consistent ventilation. Mean (SD) minute ventilation was reduced with the paediatric self-inflating bag (7.0 (3.2) l.min(-1) ) compared with the Mapleson C system (9.8 (3.5) l.min(-1) ) and adult self-inflating bag (9.7 (4.2) l.min(-1) ; p = 0.003). Tidal volume was also lower with the paediatric self-inflating bag (391 (52) ml) compared with the others (582 (87) ml and 625 (103) ml, respectively; p < 0.001), as was peak airway pressure (14.5 (5.2) cmH(2) O vs 20.7 (9.0) cmH(2) O and 30.3 (11.4) cmH(2) O, respectively; p < 0.001). Participants hyperventilated patients' lungs in simulated cardiac arrest with all three devices. The paediatric self-inflating bag delivered the most guideline-consistent ventilation. Its use in adult cardiopulmonary resuscitation may ensure delivery of more guideline-consistent ventilation in patients with tracheal intubation.

Comparison of the Mapleson C system and adult and paediatric self-inflating bags for delivering guideline-consistent ventilation during simulated adult cardiopulmonary resuscitation
Anaesthesia. 2011 Jul;66(7):563-7

Single bag for adults and kids

A nice idea – using a single adult self-inflating bag for the resuscitation of adult and paediatric patients, marked to identify compression points that deliver specific tidal volume ranges. Might be useful in situations where equipment needs to be minimised, such as military or pre-hospital settings.

AIM: To overcome limitations of inaccurate tidal volume (TV) delivery by conventional selfinflating paediatric and adult bags during paediatric and adolescent resuscitation, we designed a novel target volume marked bag (TVMB) with four compression points marked on an adult bag surface. The aim of this study was to evaluate the TVMB in delivering preset TV.


METHODS: Fifty-three subjects (28 doctors, 17 nurses, 8 paramedics) participated in this simulation trial. TVMB, paediatric bag and adult bag were connected to a gas flow analyser for measuring TV and peak inspiratory pressure (PIP). In a random cross-over setting, participants delivered 10 ventilations using the adult bag, paediatric bag or TVMB in each of four target volume ranges (100-200ml, 200-300ml, 300-400ml, 400-500ml). We compared TV and PIP for the adult bag, paediatric bag and TVMB in each subject.


RESULTS: Compared with the paediatric bag, TVMB showed higher rates of accurate TV delivery in the 200-300ml target volume range (87-90% versus 32-35%; p<0.05). Compared with the adult bag, TVMB showed higher rates of accurate TV delivery in all target volume ranges (75-90% versus 45-50%; p<0.05). The frequency of too high or low TV delivery was higher with the adult bag than TVMB (20-30% versus 0-5%; p<0.05). There was no significant difference in PIP between the paediatric bag and TVMB (within 5cm H(2)O; p<0.05).


CONCLUSIONS: TVMB could deliver accurate TV in various target volume ranges for paediatric and adolescent resuscitation.

Resuscitation. 2011 Jun;82(6):749-54

Tube tip top tip

I’m not sure what this offers over purpose-built supraglottic airways, but effective ventilation may be achieved after failure of mask ventilation by siting a tracheal tube with its tip in the pharynx and the cuff inflated with 20 mls. The tube ‘is gently inserted 10—14cm, dependent on patient size, or until any resistance is felt, in caudal direction by letting the tip of the tube follow the palate and the posterior pharyngeal wall (in order to place the tip of the tube posterior to the epiglottis)’. As long as the tube tip or Murphy eye is not in the oesophagus, ventilation should be possible. The hand position maintains a jaw thrust while closing the mouth and occluding the nostrils.



BACKGROUND: Mask ventilation occasionally fails. Alternative readily available and simple methods to establish ventilation in these cases are needed.


METHODS: Retrospective description of cases in which a new technique, tube tip in pharynx (TTIP) ventilation, was employed for restoring ventilation in case of failed facemask ventilation during induction of anaesthesia. The technique involves a standard endotracheal tube and can be performed single-handed: A standard endotracheal tube was placed via the mouth with the tip in the pharynx and the cuff was inflated. By placing the fourth and fifth fingers below the ramus of the mandible, the third finger below the lower lip, the second finger above the upper lip and on one side of the nose and the first finger on the other side of the nose, an open airway is restored. Chin lift is inherent in the grip, thus contributing to opening of the airway.


RESULTS: In all four cases of failed mask ventilation the anaesthetist could establish an open airway and subsequent ventilation without the need for an assistant. There were no indications of gastric insufflation.


CONCLUSION: The TTIP technique established ventilation in all four patients after abandoned facemask ventilation. The technique only involves one person and an endotracheal tube and warrants to be included in the armamentarium of anaesthetists. Further prospective studies are needed to refine the technique and delimit its indications.




Tube tip in pharynx (TTIP) ventilation: simple establishment of ventilation in case of failed mask ventilation
Acta Anaesthesiol Scand. 2005 Feb;49(2):252-6

Two hands on the jaw for mask ventilation

Elective surgery patients were anaesthetised with propofol with or without fentanyl and had an oropharyngeal airway placed. They were ventilated with pressure control ventilation via facemask held with a single handed traditional ‘EC clamp’ grip and with a two-handed jaw thrust, and compared. The order in which these two techniques were trialled was randomised. All breaths were delivered with a peak pressure of 15 cm H2O, an inspiratory-to-expiratory ratio of 1:1, at a frequency of 15 breaths per minute. Ventilation was more effective with the two handed technique.

Using a self-inflating bag for resuscitation, this would translate to a two-person technique. Of note in methodology however was use of a ‘standard pillow’ and some emphasis on head extension. Perhaps ventilation would have been more effective with either technique if they had applied the golden rule of ear-to-sternal-notch positioning: a must for effective mask ventilation and successful laryngoscopy.

BACKGROUND: Mask ventilation is considered a “basic” skill for airway management. A one-handed “EC-clamp” technique is most often used after induction of anesthesia with a two-handed jaw-thrust technique reserved for difficult cases. Our aim was to directly compare both techniques with the primary outcome of air exchange in the lungs.

METHODS: Forty-two elective surgical patients were mask-ventilated after induction of anesthesia by using a one-handed “EC-clamp” technique and a two-handed jaw-thrust technique during pressure-control ventilation in randomized, crossover fashion. When unresponsive to a jaw thrust, expired tidal volumes were recorded from the expiratory limb of the anesthesia machine each for five consecutive breaths. Inadequate mask ventilation and dead-space ventilation were defined as an average tidal volume less than 4 ml/kg predicted body weight or less than 150 ml/breath, respectively. Differences in minute ventilation and tidal volume between techniques were assessed with the use of a mixed-effects model.

RESULTS: Patients were (mean ± SD) 56 ± 18 yr old with a body mass index of 30 ± 7.1 kg/m. Minute ventilation was 6.32 ± 3.24 l/min with one hand and 7.95 ± 2.70 l/min with two hands. The tidal volume was 6.80 ± 3.10 ml/kg predicted body weight with one hand and 8.60 ± 2.31 ml/kg predicted body weight with two hands. Improvement with two hands was independent of the order used. Inadequate or dead-space ventilation occurred more frequently during use of the one-handed compared with the two-handed technique (14 vs. 5%; P = 0.013).

CONCLUSION: A two-handed jaw-thrust mask technique improves upper airway patency as measured by greater tidal volumes during pressure-controlled ventilation than a one-handed “EC-clamp” technique in the unconscious apneic person.

A Two-handed Jaw-thrust Technique Is Superior to the One-handed “EC-clamp” Technique for Mask Ventilation in the Apneic Unconscious Person

Anesthesiology. 2010 Oct;113(4):873-9

Neuromuscular blockade facilitates mask ventilation

A blinded randomised controlled trial of rocuronium versus saline in anaesthetised patients demonstrated that mask ventilation was easier in paralysed patients.

The authors comment on the implications of this finding:

Our finding that neuromuscular blockade facilitates mask ventilation has important implications for the practice of managing difficult or impossible mask ventilation after administration of these drugs. Options in this case include returning to spontaneous ventilation, tracheal intubation, placement of a supraglottic airway device or obtaining emergency invasive airway access. In most cases, returning to spontaneous ventilation is not practical in a reasonable time frame, leaving tracheal intubation, supraglottic airway placement or emergency invasive airway access as the only feasible choices. Considerable evidence exists indicating that neuromuscular blockade facilitates tracheal intubation; and since our data further indicate that neuromuscular blockade facilitates mask ventilation, it follows that administering neuromuscular blockade is an advantage, rather than a hindrance when given early in a case of unrecognised difficult mask ventilation.

ABSTRACT
We wished to test the hypothesis that neuromuscular blockade facilitates mask ventilation. In order reliably and reproducibly to assess the efficiency of mask ventilation, we developed a novel grading scale (Warters scale), based on attempts to generate a standardised tidal volume. Following induction of general anaesthesia, a blinded anaesthesia provider assessed mask ventilation in 90 patients using our novel grading scale. The non-blinded anaesthesiologist then randomly administered rocuronium or normal saline. After 2 min, mask ventilation was reassessed by the blinded practitioner. Rocuronium significantly improved ventilation scores on the Warters scale (mean (SD) 2.3 (1.6) vs 1.2 (0.9), p<0.001). In a subgroup of patients with a baseline Warters scale value of >3 (i.e. difficult to mask ventilate; n=14), the ventilation scores also showed significant improvement (4.2 (1.2) vs 1.9 (1.0), p=0.0002). Saline administration had no effect on ventilation scores. Our data indicate that neuromuscular blockade facilitates mask ventilation. We discuss the implications of this finding for unexpected difficult airway management and for the practice of confirming adequate mask ventilation before the administration of neuromuscular blockade.

The effect of neuromuscular blockade on mask ventilation
Anaesthesia. 2011 Mar;66(3):163-7

Prone ventilation in ARDS

Prone ventilation can improve refractory hypoxaemia in ARDS but its effects on mortality have not been impressive in some studies which may be underpowered or include patients with less severe hypoxaemia. An updated meta-analysis showed significantly reduced ICU mortality in the four recent studies that enrolled only patients with ARDS, as opposed to ARDS/ALI (odds ratio = 0.71; 95% confidence interval = 0.5 to 0.99; P = 0.048; number needed to treat = 11). There may also be benefit from a greater duration of prone positioning.

An updated study-level meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials on proning in ARDS and acute lung injury
Critical Care 2011, 15:R6 Full text

Newborn mask ventilation

Seventy doctors and nurses from neonatal units administered positive pressure ventilation to a term newborn manikin using a Neopuff T-piece device. Recordings were made (1) before training, (2) after training in mask handling and (3) 3 weeks later. Leak and obstruction were calculated.

Median (IQR) leak was 71% (32–95%) before training, 10% (5–37%) directly after training and 15% (4–33%) 3 weeks later (p<0.001). When leak was minimal, gas flow obstruction was observed before, directly after training and 3 weeks later in 46%, 42% and 37% of inflations, respectively.

The training provided included the following demonstrated mask technique:

  1. Place the manikin’s head in a neutral position and gently roll the mask upwards onto the face from the tip of the chin.
  2. Hold the mask with the two-point-top hold where the thumb and index finger apply balanced pressure to the top flat portion of the mask where the silicone is thickest.
  3. The stem is not held and the fingers should not encroach onto the skirt of the mask.
  4. The thumb and index finger apply an even pressure on top of the mask.
  5. The third, fourth and fifth fingers perform a chin lift with the same pressure upwards as applied by the thumb and index finger downwards.

In this technique the mask is squeezed onto the face, between the downward thrust of the fingers and upward pull of the chin lift.

Leak and obstruction with mask ventilation during simulated neonatal resuscitation
Arch Dis Child Fetal Neonatal Ed 2010;95:F398-F402

Even with the right technique, adequacy of ventilation can be hard to assess. Principles to bear in mind are:

  • International guidelines recommend that infants with inadequate breathing or bradycardia be given positive pressure ventilation (PPV) via a face mask with a self-inflating bag, flow-inflating bag or T-piece device.
  • Adequacy of ventilation is then judged by assessing the heart rate.
  • However, if the heart rate does not increase, chest wall movements should be assessed to gauge adequacy of ventilation.
  • A human observational study reported a mean VT of 6.5 ml/kg in spontaneous breathing preterm infants in the first minutes of life.
  • When assisted ventilation is required, a peak inflating pressure (PIP) is chosen with the assumption that this will deliver an appropriate VT.
  • However, lung compliance and therefore the PIP required to deliver an appropriate VT vary in the minutes after birth.
  • It is likely that there are even greater differences between infants as the mechanical properties of the lung vary with gestational age and disease states.
  • In addition, many infants breathe during PPV adding to the inconsistency of VT delivered with a set PIP. Therefore, relying on a fixed PIP and subjective assessment of chest wall movement may result in either under- or over-ventilation.
  • Animal studies have shown that PPV with VT >8 ml/kg or inflations with large VTs can damage the lungs.

In an observational study of actual newborn resuscitations in Melbourne, researchers measured inflating pressures and VT delivered using a respiratory function monitor, and calculated face mask leak. After 60 seconds of PPV, resuscitators were asked to estimate VT and face mask leak. These estimates were compared with measurements taken during the previous 30 s.

In 20 infants, the median (IQR) expired tidal volume (VTe) delivered was 8.7 ml/kg (5.3–11.3). VTe and mask leak varied widely during each resuscitation and between resuscitators, who were also poor at estimating VT and mask leak.

Assessment of tidal volume and gas leak during mask ventilation of preterm infants in the delivery room.
Arch Dis Child Fetal Neonatal Ed. 2010 Nov;95(6):F393-7