Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

"Noisy" Ventilators Are Better Ventilators

Date:
May 19, 1998
Source:
Boston University
Summary:
Physicians have long known that putting a patient with compromised breathing onto a ventilator is a double-edged sword. While the mechanical device undeniably prolongs life by breathing for the patient, it also can damage delicate lung tissue, and over time the ventilator's effectiveness in delivering oxygen to the blood may be considerably diminished.

(Boston, Mass.) -- Physicians have long known that putting a patient with compromised breathing onto a ventilator is a double-edged sword. While the mechanical device undeniably prolongs life by breathing for the patient, it also can damage delicate lung tissue, and over time the ventilator's effectiveness in delivering oxygen to the blood may be considerably diminished.

Related Articles


In this week's edition of Nature, scientists at Boston University's Department of Biomedical Engineering report a new model of ventilator assisted lung function. In this model the pressure of the air delivered by the ventilator is varied by the addition of "noise," a random amount of additional air pressure which varies from breath to breath. This approach was first used by scientists at the University of Manitoba.

Based on new computer simulations developed at Boston University, the scientists now believe that the "noisy" ventilator not only has the potential to improve gas exchange in patients with lung injury but it may also minimize additional trauma.

Suki and his colleagues at Boston University developed a computer model of lung injury in which large regions of the lung are collapsed. They found that during inhalation, collapsed regions of the lung tend to open in a burst, or avalanche, with large groups of airways and alveoli popping open simultaneously, suddenly increasing the alveolar surface area available for gas exchange. They found that by varying the pressure of the air delivered by the ventilator -- adding "noise" to the base air pressure -- this avalanche-like opening of the airways and alveoli was enhanced and gas exchange was improved.

Furthermore, the scientists discovered there is an optimum amount of noise. Too much variability may lead to barotrauma (high pressure induced lung injury) while too little noise may have no effect at all.

This phenomenon is similar to noise-enhanced amplification of a useful signal via stochastic resonance, an effect that can be found in many neuronal systems. "We believe understanding the mechanism underlying this new mode of ventilation is important," says Suki, "because using the concept of stochastic resonance will allow us to optimize ventilation strategy for each individual." Suki and his colleagues are now testing this model on animals with promising preliminary results.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Boston University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Boston University. ""Noisy" Ventilators Are Better Ventilators." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 19 May 1998. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1998/05/980519073406.htm>.
Boston University. (1998, May 19). "Noisy" Ventilators Are Better Ventilators. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 31, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1998/05/980519073406.htm
Boston University. ""Noisy" Ventilators Are Better Ventilators." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1998/05/980519073406.htm (accessed October 31, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Friday, October 31, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Fauci Says Ebola Risk in US "essentially Zero"

Fauci Says Ebola Risk in US "essentially Zero"

AP (Oct. 30, 2014) NIAID Director Anthony Fauci said the risk of Ebola becoming an epidemic in the U.S. is essentially zero Thursday at the Washington Ideas Forum. He also said an Ebola vaccine will be tested in West Africa in the next few months. (Oct. 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Nurse Defies Ebola Quarantine With Bike Ride

Nurse Defies Ebola Quarantine With Bike Ride

AP (Oct. 30, 2014) A nurse who vowed to defy Maine's voluntary quarantine for health care workers who treated Ebola patients followed through on her promise Thursday, leaving her home for an hour-long bike ride. (Oct. 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Pot-Infused Edibles Raise Concerns in Colorado

Pot-Infused Edibles Raise Concerns in Colorado

AFP (Oct. 30, 2014) Colorado may have legalized marijuana for recreational use, but the debate around the decision still continues, with a recent - failed - attempt to ban cannabis-infused edibles. Duration: 01:53 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
British Navy Ship Arrives in Sierra Leone With Ebola Aid

British Navy Ship Arrives in Sierra Leone With Ebola Aid

AFP (Oct. 30, 2014) The British ship RFA ARGUS arrived in Sierra Leone to deliver supplies and equipment to help the fight against Ebola. Duration: 00:42 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins