Diaphragm pacing. Application to a patient with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease

W W Glenn, J B Gee, E N Schachter
Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery 1978, 75 (2): 273-81
In a 66-year-old patient with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) complicated by arterial hypoxemia and repeated episodes of respiratory and right ventricular failure, a satisfactory level of oxygenation could not be maintained despite controlled oxygen therapy. To enable oxygen to be administered without depression ventilation, artificial respiration by means of phrenic nerve stimulation (diaphragm pacing) has been employed. Evidence of clinical improvement since pacing was begun 32 months ago include fewer episodes of respiratory failure and better control of congestive heart failure despite a gradual worsening of pulmonary function.

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