The time taken for the regional distribution of ventilation to stabilise: An investigation using electrical impedance tomography
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Electrical impedance tomography is a novel technology capable of quantifying ventilation distribution in the lung in real time during various therapeutic manoeuvres. The technique requires changes to the patient’s position to place the electrical impedance tomography electrodes circumferentially around the thorax. The impact of these position changes on the time taken to stabilise the regional distribution of ventilation determined by electrical impedance tomography is unknown. This study aimed to determine the time taken for the regional distribution of ventilation determined by electrical impedance tomography to stabilise after changing position. Eight healthy, male volunteers were connected to electrical impedance tomography and a pneumotachometer. After 30 minutes stabilisation supine, participants were moved into 60 degrees Fowler’s position and then returned to supine. Thirty minutes was spent in each position. Concurrent readings of ventilation distribution and tidal volumes were taken every five minutes. A mixed regression model with a random intercept was used to compare the positions and changes over time. The anterior-posterior distribution stabilised after ten minutes in Fowler’s position and ten minutes after returning to supine. Left-right stabilisation was achieved after 15 minutes in Fowler’s position and supine. A minimum of 15 minutes of stabilisation should be allowed for spontaneously breathing individuals when assessing ventilation distribution. This time allows stabilisation to occur in the anterior-posterior direction as well as the left-right direction.
Anaesthesia and Intensive Care
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Clinical Sciences not elsewhere classified