SARS-CoV-2 infection may lead to Coronavirus Disease 19 (COVID19), which can severely hamper the function of a patient’s lungs and require that the patient utilize a medical device to help them respirate. One such device to help patients effectively respirate is a ventilator: a mechanical device invented more than 150 years ago that mechanically controls air pressure and flow to a patient. In addition to patients suffering from COVID19, ventilators are used in a wide array of medical interventions, including general anesthesia.
While modern day ventilators save patient’s lives, they are expensive and require extensive training for proper use. Not only do settings, such as target air pressure or air volume provided, need to be properly calibrated to each patient, but these settings may change for an individual patient over time. If ventilators are not accurately attuned to the specific patient, a ventilator may actually cause harm to the patient’s lungs. T read the full story.