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Simultaneous ventilation in the Covid-19 pandemic. A bench study

Abstract : COVID-19 pandemic sets the healthcare system to a shortage of ventilators. We aimed at assessing tidal volume (VT) delivery and air recirculation during expiration when one ventilator is divided into 2 test-lungs. The study was performed in a research laboratory in a medical ICU of a University hospital. An ICU (V500) and a lower-level ventilator (Elisée 350) were attached to two test-lungs (QuickLung) through a dedicated flow-splitter. A 50 mL/cmH2O Compliance (C) and 5 cmH2O/L/s Resistance (R) were set in both A and B test-lungs (A C50R5 / B C50R5, step1), A C50-R20 / B C20-R20 (step 2), A C20-R20 / B C10-R20 (step 3), and A C50-R20 / B C20-R5 (step 4). Each ventilator was set in volume and pressure control mode to deliver 800mL VT. We assessed VT from a pneumotachograph placed immediately before each lung, pendelluft air, and expiratory resistance (circuit and valve). Values are median (1st-3rd quartiles) and compared between ventilators by non-parametric tests. Between Elisée 350 and V500 in volume control VT in A/B test- lungs were 381/387 vs. 412/433 mL in step 1, 501/270 vs. 492/370 mL in step 2, 509/237 vs. 496/332 mL in step 3, and 496/281 vs. 480/329 mL in step 4. In pressure control the corresponding values were 373/336 vs. 430/414 mL, 416/185 vs. 322/234 mL, 193/108 vs. 176/ 92 mL and 422/201 vs. 481/329mL, respectively (P\textless0.001 between ventilators at each step for each volume). Pendelluft air volume ranged between 0.7 to 37.8 ml and negatively correlated with expiratory resistance in steps 2 and 3. The lower-level ventilator performed closely to the ICU ventilator. In the clinical setting, these findings suggest that, due to dependence of VT to C, pressure control should be preferred to maintain adequate VT at least in one patient when C and/or R changes abruptly and monitoring of VT should be done carefully. Increasing expiratory resistance should reduce pendelluft volume.
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Submitted on : Wednesday, June 30, 2021 - 9:55:16 AM
Last modification on : Tuesday, July 13, 2021 - 3:09:33 AM

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C. Guérin, M. Cour, N. Stevic, F. Degivry, E. l'Her, et al.. Simultaneous ventilation in the Covid-19 pandemic. A bench study. PLoS ONE, Public Library of Science, 2021, 16 (1), pp.e0245578. ⟨10.1371/journal.pone.0245578⟩. ⟨inserm-03274426⟩

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