Respiratory Failure is a life-threatening condition where the lungs cannot provide the body's vital organs with enough oxygen. Respiratory failure occurs when the respiratory system fails to maintain gas exchange, resulting in hypoxia or hypercapnia making it difficult to breath. Respiratory Failure can come in a variety of forms
Type 1 Respiratory Failure (hypoxemic): is associated with damage to lung tissue which prevents adequate oxygenation of the blood. However, the remaining normal lung is still sufficient to excrete carbon dioxide. This results in low oxygen, and normal or low carbon dioxide levels. Arterial oxygen pressure (PaO2) is <8 kPa (60 mm Hg) with normal or low arterial carbon dioxide pressure (PaCO2).
Common causes of typerespiratory failure:
- Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
- Pulmonary oedema.
- Pulmonary fibrosis.
- Pulmonary embolism.
- Pulmonary hypertension.
- Cyanotic congenital heart disease.
- Acute respiratory distress syndrome.
- Respiratory illness associated with HIV infection.
Type 2 Respiratory Failure (hypercapnic): occurs when alveolar ventilation is insufficient to excrete the carbon dioxide produced. Inadequate ventilation is due to reduced ventilatory effort or inability to overcome increased resistance to ventilation. It affects the lung as a whole, and therefore carbon dioxide accumulates, presenting with PaO2 of <8 kPa (60 mm Hg) or normal, with hypercapnia PaCO2 >6.0kPa (> 50 mm Hg).
Common causes of type II respiratory failure:
- Severe asthma.
- Drug overdose, poisoning.
- Myasthenia gravis.
- Muscle disorders.
- Head injuries and neck injuries.
- Pulmonary oedema.
- Adult respiratory distress syndrome.
Respiratory failure can be indicated through the measurement of the respiratory rate per minute. By manually measuring a patient's Respiratory Rate (mRR) medical professionals can underestimate the severity of the patient’s status as RR may be compensating for poor gas exchange.
By using RespiraSense, the electronic monitoring of Respiratory Rate (eRR) can indicate a patient trying to compensate up to 12 hours earlier than the standard of care (mRR and SpO2 alone). Enabling early intervention prevents sudden patient deterioration allows for better patient outcomes and care. RespiraSense allows for timely discharge of patients preventing overcrowded hospitals.