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Pediatr Pulmonol. 1986 Sep-Oct;2(5):307-11.

Clinical observations on mechanical ventilation for respiratory failure in bronchiolitis.


An unusually large number of infants (82) were admitted to Stanford University Hospital from November 1, 1983, through May 31, 1985, with a diagnosis of bronchiolitis requiring oxygen therapy. A larger percentage of these infants (17/82 = 21%) than generally expected required mechanical ventilation for respiratory failure. Fourteen infants had respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) infections, and three had parainfluenza virus infections. Ten patients had respiratory difficulties as neonates. The mechanical ventilation of the children requiring respiratory assistance was characterized by high minute ventilation with high tidal volumes (15 to 20 ml/kg) and slow respiratory rates (16 to 22 breaths/min). Peak inspiratory pressure averaged (mean +/- SD) 35 +/- 6 cm H2O in the RSV group and 34 +/- 6 cm H2O in the parainfluenza group. The mean number of days on the ventilator was 9.7 +/- 3.1 for the RSV group and 8.3 +/- 2.9 for the parainfluenza group. All were extubated within 17 days of presentation and discharged within 28 days. The complications encountered included pneumothorax and acute pulmonary hypertension.

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