Airway Pressure Release Ventilation: Improving Oxygenation

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Abstract

Airway pressure release ventilation (APRV) is a mode of ventilation that has been around since the 1980s and was originally viewed as a type of continuous positive pressure mode of ventilation. Conceptually, APRV can be thought of as a type of inverse-ratio, pressure-controlled, intermittent mandatory ventilation during which the maintenance of spontaneous breathing and prolonged application of high mean airway pressure contribute to the clinical benefits. The aim of this review article was to familiarize the bedside clinician working in the intensive care unit with the theory and rationale behind this mode of ventilation. The potential advantages and disadvantages of APRV will also be discussed to empower the advance practice clinician and bedside nurse to advocate for their patient diagnosed with the often-high mortality disease of acute respiratory distress syndrome.

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