Author(s): Hamaekers AE, Borg PA, Enk D
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Abstract BACKGROUND: A small, flow-regulated, manually operated ventilator designed for ventilation through a narrow-bore transtracheal catheter (TTC) has become available (Ventrain, Dolphys Medical BV, Eindhoven, The Netherlands). It is driven by a predetermined flow of oxygen from a high-pressure source and facilitates expiration by suction. The aim of this bench study was to test the efficacy of this new ventilator. METHODS: The driving pressure, generated insufflation, and suction pressures and also the suction capacity of the Ventrain were measured at different oxygen flows. The minute volume achieved in an artificial lung through a TTC with an inner diameter (ID) of 2 mm was determined at different settings. RESULTS: Oxygen flows of 6-15 litre min(-1) resulted in driving pressures of 0.5-2.3 bar. Insufflation pressures, measured proximal to the TTC, ranged from 23 to 138 cm H(2)O. The maximal subatmospheric pressure build-up was -217 cm H(2)O. The suction capacity increased to a maximum of 12.4 litre min(-1) at an oxygen flow of 15 litre min(-1). At this flow, the achievable minute volume through the TTC ranged from 5.9 to 7.1 litres depending on the compliance of the artificial lung. CONCLUSIONS: The results of this bench study suggest that the Ventrain is capable of achieving a normal minute volume for an average adult through a 2 mm ID TTC. Further in vivo studies are needed to determine the value of the Ventrain as a portable emergency ventilator in a 'cannot intubate, cannot ventilate' situation.
This article was published in Br J Anaesth
and referenced in Journal of Clinical Case Reports