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Critical Care Research and Practice
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 439267, 5 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2012/439267
Research Article

Humidification Performance of Heat and Moisture Exchangers for Pediatric Use

1The University of Tokushima Graduate School, 3-18-15 Kuramoto-cho, Tokushima City, Tokushima 770-8503, Japan
2Faculty of Medicine, The University of Tokushima, 3-18-15 Kuramoto-cho, Tokushima City, Tokushima 770-8503, Japan
3Department of Emergency and Critical Care Medicine, The University of Tokushima Graduate School, 3-18-15 Kuramoto-cho, Tokushima City, Tokushima 770-8503, Japan
4Department of Emergency and Disaster Medicine, Tokushima University Hospital, 2-50-1, Kuramoto-cho, Tokushima City, Tokushima 770-8503, Japan

Received 5 July 2011; Revised 17 October 2011; Accepted 17 October 2011

Academic Editor: Peter J. Papadakos

Copyright © 2012 Yusuke Chikata et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Background. While heat and moisture exchangers (HMEs) have been increasingly used for humidification during mechanical ventilation, the efficacy of pediatric HMEs has not yet been fully evaluated. Methods. We tested ten pediatric HMEs when mechanically ventilating a model lung at respiratory rates of 20 and 30 breaths/min and pressure control of 10, 15, and 20 cmH2O. The expiratory gas passed through a heated humidifier. We created two rates of leakage: 3.2 L/min (small) and 5.1 L/min (large) when pressure was 10 cmH2O. We measured absolute humidity (AH) at the Y-piece. Results. Without leakage, eight of ten HMEs maintained AH at more than 30 mg/L. With the small leak, AH decreased below 30 mg/L (26.6 to 29.5 mg/L), decreasing further (19.7 to 27.3 mg/L) with the large leak. Respiratory rate and pressure control level did not affect AH values. Conclusions. Pediatric HMEs provide adequate humidification performance when leakage is absent.