Category: Critical Care
Keywords: bilevel ventilation, bipap, cpap, respiratory failure, respiratory distress, copd, acute pulmonary edema (PubMed Search)
Emergency Medicine physicians are gaining experience with non-invasive ventilation (i.e., Bi-level ventilation and continuous positive-pressure ventilation) in managing respiratory distress and failure. Although NIV is commonly used across a variety of pathologies, the best data exists for use with COPD exacerbation and cardiogenic pulmonary edema (CHF, not an acute MI)
Although other indications for NIV have been studied, the data is less robust (eg., smaller study size, weak control groups, etc.). If there are no contraindications, however, many experts still support a trial of NIV in the following populations:
Failure to clinically improve during a NIV trial should prompt invasive mechanical ventilation.
Keenan, S. et al. Clinical practice guidelines for the use of noninvasive positive-pressure ventilation and noninvasive continuous positive airway pressure in the acute care setting. CMAJ. 2011 Feb 22;183(3):E195-214. Epub 2011 Feb 14.