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In vitro evaluation of delays in the adjustment of the fraction of inspired oxygen during CPAP: effect of flow and volume


Background Adjusting the fraction of inspired oxygen (FiO2) delivered to preterm infants to keep their oxygen saturation within target range remains challenging. Closed-loop automated FiO2 control increases the time infants spend within the assigned target range. The delay with which FiO2 adjustments at the ventilator result in a change in the inspired gas limits the performance of both manual and automated controls.

Objective To evaluate the equilibration time (Teq) between FiO2 adjustments and changes in FiO2 reaching the patient.

Methods In vitro determination of the delay in FiO2 adjustments at the ventilator at 5 and 8 L/min of gas flow and two different humidifier/ventilator circuit volumes (840 and 432 mL).

Results Teq values were 31, 23, 20 and 17 s for the volume–flow combinations 840 mL+5 L/min, 840 mL+8 L/min, 432 mL+5 L/min and 432 mL+8 L/min, respectively.

Conclusion The identified delay seems clinically relevant and should be taken into account during manual and automatic control of FiO2.

  • neonatology
  • technology
  • clinical procedures
  • physiology
  • respiratory

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