Inhaled fenoterol-ipratropium bromide in mechanically ventilated patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease

C Guerin, A Chevre, P Dessirier, T Poncet, M H Becquemin, P F Dequin, C Le Guellec, D Jacques, G Fournier
American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine 1999, 159 (4): 1036-42
In 18 patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease intubated and mechanically ventilated, we prospectively randomized 200 micrograms fenoterol-80 micrograms ipratropium bromide (four puffs) from a metered-dose inhaler (MDI) versus 1.25 mg fenoterol-500 micrograms ipratropium bromide in 5 ml saline from a nebulizer (NEB). Respiratory mechanics were assessed before and 30 min after the end of each delivery by the rapid end-inspiratory airway occlusion technique. We did vary on single breaths the inflation flow (V) from 0.2 to 1.2 L. s-1, at constant inflation volume. The total respiratory resistance of the respiratory system (Rrs) was partitioned into airway (Rint,rs) and tissue (DeltaRrs) resistances. We found that Rrs was equivalently reduced, from 16.49 +/- 1.37 to 14.85 +/- 1.88 cm H2O. L-1. s with MDI (p < 0.05) and from 18.04 +/- 1.85 to 15.15 +/- 1.33 cm H2O. L-1. s with NEB (p < 0.01). Whereas the prevailing effect of MDI was to reduce Rint,rs, that of NEB was to decrease DeltaRrs. In addition, the V resistance of the respiratory system over the whole range of V was significantly affected by NEB but not by MDI.

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