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Respir Care. 2014 Mar;59(3):340-4. doi: 10.4187/respcare.01904. Epub 2013 Aug 6.

In vitro evaluation of radio-labeled aerosol delivery via a variable-flow infant CPAP system.

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  • 1Respiratory Therapy, Neonatal Service Line.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Nasal CPAP is widely used in neonatal ICUs. Aerosolized medications such as inhaled steroids and β agonists are commonly administered in-line through nasal CPAP, especially to infants with bronchopulmonary dysplasia. We hypothesized that aerosol delivery to the lungs via variable-flow nasal CPAP in an in vitro model would be unreliable, and that the delivery would depend on the position of the aerosol generator within the nasal CPAP circuit.

METHODS:

We used a system that employed a test lung placed in a plastic jar and subjected to negative pressure. Simulated inspiration effort was measured with a heated-wire anemometer. We used technetium-99m-labeled diethylene triamine penta-acetic acid as our aerosol. The nebulizer was placed either close to the humidifier or close to the nasal prongs in the circuit, and patient effort was simulated with a minute ventilation of 0.4 L/min.

RESULTS:

Relative aerosol delivery to the infant test lung with the nebulizer close to the humidifier was extremely low (0.3 ± 0.4%), whereas placing the nebulizer close to the nasal prongs resulted in significantly (P < .001) improved delivery (21 ± 11%). Major areas of aerosol deposition with the nebulizer close to the humidifier versus close to the nasal prongs were: nebulizer (10 ± 4% vs 33 ± 13%, P < .001), exhalation limb (9 ± 17% vs 26 ± 30%, P = .23), and generator tubing (21 ± 11% vs 19 ± 20%, P = .86). Placing the nebulizer close to the humidifier resulted in 59 ± 8% of the aerosol being deposited in the inhalation tubing along the heater wire.

CONCLUSIONS:

Isotope delivery from an aerosol generator placed near the humidifier on variable-flow nasal CPAP was negligible in this in vitro setup; however, such delivery was significantly improved by locating the aerosol generator closer to the nasal CPAP interface.

KEYWORDS:

bronchopulmonary dysplasia; inhalational administration; neonatal respiratory distress; neonate; respiratory therapy

Comment in

PMID:
23920215
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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