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Respiratory support with continuous positive airways pressure 

Respiratory support with continuous positive airways pressure
Respiratory support with continuous positive airways pressure

Francesco Mojoli

and Antonio Braschi

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date: 25 February 2020

Continuous positive airways pressure (CPAP) is a mechanical ventilation (MV) mode in which the patient breaths spontaneously at a higher than atmospheric pressure. CPAP increases transpulmonary pressure inducing an FRC increase and a WOB decrease in acute restrictive lung pathology, with improvement of gas exchange. The work of breathing (WOB) is also reduced in the resistive component and inspiratory effort can be reduced if the patient experiences airway collapse and flow limitation, where CPAP counteracts the inspiratory threshold load represented by intrinsic PEEP. CPAP has been proven to be useful in many clinical situation and the technique for administration has a pivotal role in clinical efficacy of the technique. It’s crucial to keep the positive pressure as constant as possible and to avoid any technical increase of WOB. These goals can be achieved by continuous or demand flow systems. The modern ventilators work well and have overcome the valve function problem, which made difficult to use CPAP with old-generation machines.

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