Pulmonary, Medication Management, Patient Safety
John Gallagher, DNP, RN, CCRN-K, CCNS, TCRN, RRT
Standard modes of ventilation remain popular among critical care practitioners, but they have many limitations. The primary limitation of standard modes is the inability to address changes in patient ventilation needs over time. The classic volume/pressure control modes of standard ventilators deliver only set parameters, which may not provide optimal ventilation during improvement or deterioration. Alternative modes of ventilation offer the ability to match patient needs through incorporated feedback systems. These newer modes detect changes in lung parameters and adjust based on those changes. The use of ventilator physics by these newer alternative ventilation modes assists in weaning patients from mechanical ventilation, improves ventilator synchrony, decreases ventilation days and improves patient safety. This course describes the differences between standard and alternative modes of ventilation and the uses and limitations of both modalities.