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A Novel Form of Manually Assisted Ventilation*

Andrew C. Stone, MD; Sheila Nolan; Muhanned Abu-Hijelhia, MD; Dennis McCool, MD; Nicholas S. Hill, MD, FCCP
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*From the Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care, and Sleep Medicine, Brown Medical School, Providence, RI.

Correspondence to: Nicholas S. Hill, MD, FCCP, Pulmonary, Critical Care and Sleep Division, Tufts-New England Medical Center, 750 Washington St, #257, Boston, MA 02111; e-mail: nhill@lifespan.org



Chest. 2003;123(3):949-952. doi:10.1378/chest.123.3.949
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We report an individual with limb-girdle muscular dystrophy who has devised a way to assist her respiration by using her hands braced against the tray of her wheelchair. Utilizing this method, she was able to increase her tidal volume (Vt) and lower her respiratory rate compared to unassisted spontaneous breathing, thereby maintaining a stable minute volume. The manually assisted Vt measurements were comparable to those achieved using an intermittent abdominal pressure respirator (pneumatic belt). We believe that others with neuromuscular syndromes could use this technique, possibly decreasing their dependence on mechanical ventilatory assist devices.

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