An Alternative Approach to the Monitoring of Respiration by Dynamic Air-Pressure Sensor

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Abstract

Monitoring and assessing of patient respiratory function during conscious sedation are important because many drugs used for conscious sedation produce respiratory depression and subsequent hypoventilation. The purpose of this study is to assess the value of a dynamic air-pressure sensor for respiratory monitoring of clothed patients. Eight clothed adult volunteers were reclined on a dental chair positioned horizontally. The air bag for measuring air-pressure signals corresponding to respiration was placed on the seat back of the dental chair in the central lumbar area of the subject. The subject breathed through a face mask with a respirometer attached for measuring expiratory tidal volume. The air-pressure signals corresponding to respiration were obtained and the time integration values for air pressure during each expiration (∫Pexp) were calculated. The expiratory tidal volume (TVexp) was measured simultaneously by respirometer. The relationship between TVexp and ∫Pexp for each subject was assessed by a Pearson correlation coefficient. A strong correlation between TVexp and ∫Pexp was observed in all subjects. Measuring ∫Pexp by dynamic air-pressure sensor makes it possible to estimate respiratory volume breath by breath, and the respiratory pressure-time integral waveform was useful in visually monitoring the respiration pattern. We believe that in the future this device will be used to monitor respiratory physiology in clothed patients, contributing to safer sedative procedures.

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