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Proportional Assist Ventilation and Neurally Adjusted Ventilatory Assist

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Patient-ventilator synchrony is a common problem with all patients actively triggering the mechanical ventilator. In many cases synchrony can be improved by vigilant adjustments by the managing clinician. However, in most institutions clinicians are not able to spend the time necessary to ensure synchrony in all patients. Proportional assist ventilation (PAV) and neurally adjusted ventilatory assist (NAVA) were both developed to improve patient-ventilator synchrony by proportionally unloading ventilatory effort and turning control of the ventilatory pattern over to the patient. This paper discusses PAV's and NAVA's theory of operation, general process of application, and the supporting literature.

Keywords: EMG; assisted ventilation; diaphragmatic electromyogram; patient-ventilator synchrony; work of breathing

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.4187/respcare.01021

Affiliations: Department of Anesthesiology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts, USA; Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, USA

Publication date: February 1, 2011

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