Assessment of lung function using a non-invasive oscillating gas-forcing technique.
Clifton L., Clifton DA., Hahn CEW., Farmery AD.
Conventional methods for monitoring lung function can require complex, or special, gas analysers, and may therefore not be practical in clinical areas such as the intensive care unit (ICU) or operating theatre. The system proposed in this article is a compact and non-invasive system for the measurement and monitoring of lung variables, such as alveolar volume, airway dead space, and pulmonary blood flow. In contrast with conventional methods, the compact apparatus and non-invasive nature of the proposed method could eventually allow it to be used in the ICU, as well as in general clinical settings. We also propose a novel tidal ventilation model using a non-invasive oscillating gas-forcing technique, where both nitrous oxide and oxygen are used as indicator gases. Experimental results are obtained from healthy volunteers, and are compared with those obtained using a conventional continuous ventilation model. Our findings show that the proposed technique can be used to assess lung function, and has several advantages over conventional methods such as compact and portable apparatus, easy usage, and quick estimation of cardiopulmonary variables.