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Parasternal electromyography to determine the relationship between patient-ventilator asynchrony and nocturnal gas exchange during home mechanical ventilation set-up

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)946-952
Number of pages7
Issue number10
Early online date21 Jul 2015
Accepted/In press22 Jun 2015
E-pub ahead of print21 Jul 2015
Published1 Oct 2015

King's Authors


Introduction: Patient-ventilator asynchrony (PVA) can adversely affect the successful initiation of non-invasive home mechanical ventilation (HMV). The aim of this observational study was to quantify the prevalence of PVA during initiation of HMV and to determine the relationship between PVA and nocturnal gas exchange.

Method: Type and frequency of PVA were measured by surface parasternal intercostal muscle electromyography, thoracoabdominal plethysmography and mask pressure during initiation of HMV. Severe PVA was defined, as previously, as asynchrony affecting ≥10% of breaths.

Results: 28 patients (18 male) were enrolled aged 61±15 years and with a body mass index of 35±9 kg/m2. Underlying diagnoses were neuromuscular disease with or without chest wall disease (n=6), obesity related chronic respiratory failure (n=12) and COPD (n=10). PVA was observed in all patients with 79% of patients demonstrating severe PVA. Triggering asynchrony was most frequent, observed in 24% (IQR: 11–36%) of breaths, with ineffective efforts accounting for 16% (IQR: 4–24%). PVA types were similar between disease groups, with the exception of auto-triggering, which was higher in patients with COPD (12% (IQR: 6–26%)). There was no correlation observed between PVA and time spent with oxygen saturations ≤90%, mean oxygen saturations or transcutaneous carbon dioxide levels during overnight ventilation.

Conclusions: Severe PVA was identified in the majority of patients, irrespective of pathophysiological disease state. This was not associated with ineffective ventilation as evidenced by gas exchange.

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