UK experts have designed a new ventilator that can treat patients with severe corona virus out of intensive care.
Conventional ventilators provide positive pressure and push air into the lungs, but Exovent instead reduces the pressure outside the body.
This allows the lung tissue to expand and function in a way similar to normal breathing.
Researchers say the negative pressure device is more convenient than other ventilators – they use a mask or hose to deliver air – as well as are significantly cheaper and require less staff.
Patients do not need to faint, and can eat and take medicine by mouth, while being free to make video calls or talk to family on the phone. However, the ventilator still needs to be approved by regulators.
Designed by a team of anesthesiologists, nurses and engineers, it uses a pump to adjust the pressure around the torso.
The body can be monitored through a window and the portholes provide access to the patient.
Chief Executive Ian Jospery called it “the most sophisticated invention of pre-existing technology”.
“Since the patient does not need to faint, it opens up alternative therapies that will allow more patients. COVID-19 We need to get treatment outside of intensive care, ”he said.
It has been tested on six healthy adults and researchers say it “increased lung expansion in people who breathe spontaneously and provided powerful ventilation to take full advantage of people’s breathing using only moderate negative pressures”.
A full clinical trial is required to verify the results, but the company plans to submit the design to the Pharmaceuticals and Health Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).
Exovent maker says it may also help people with pneumonia or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
More details about the device have been published in the journal Anesthesia.
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