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Innovative Negative Pressure Ventilator Could Provide Additional Treatment Options for COVID-19 Patients with Respiratory Failure

By HospiMedica International staff writers
Posted on 21 Jan 2021
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Image: Innovative Negative Pressure Ventilator (Photo courtesy of Exovent)
Image: Innovative Negative Pressure Ventilator (Photo courtesy of Exovent)
A new negative pressure ventilator created by a team of anesthetists, nurses and engineers could provide additional treatment options for patients with respiratory failure, including those with COVID-19.

The negative pressure ventilator designed to assist the recovery of COVID-19 patients and for the treatment of pneumonia and COPD has been unveiled by Exovent (London, UK), a UK task force formed for rapid innovation to combat the unique challenge presented by this highly contagious and aggressive disease. After developing extensively tested prototypes, the Exovent team of eminent medical professionals, scientists, engineers, academics, business professionals and manufacturers has launched exovent-19, the latest and most advanced iteration of its negative pressure ventilatory support device that is particularly suitable to support COVID-19 patients.

The use of negative pressure is far less intrusive and much more like normal breathing than either intubation or continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP). exovent-19 is non-invasive, which means that patients do not need to have their windpipes intubated, so they don’t need to be anaesthetized and oxygen can be delivered in the form of a normal oxygen mask or nasal prongs rather than through a high flow oxygen device that puts hospital oxygen supplies under pressure. Patients remain conscious, and can take medication and nutrition by mouth, and talk to loved ones on the phone.

The exovent-19 works by being fitted over the patient’s torso and can operate in two modes, continuous negative extrathoracic pressure (CNEP), the negative pressure equivalent of CPAP, increases the volume of air in the lungs while the patient continues to breath for themselves by applying negative pressure to the outside of the patient’s chest and abdomen. Negative pressure ventilation (NPV) cycles that negative pressure and reduces the effort required for a patient to breath. The level of support can be increased or reduced progressively to help in the patient’s recovery. It also increases the heart’s efficiency compared to conventional ventilators which squeeze the chest and put pressure on the heart. The simple design concept for the exovent system makes it widely accessible with highly cost effective, reliable units able to be readily manufactured and approved around the world.

"We are really excited to be unveiling this life-saving system which is a cutting-edge reinvention of pre-existing technology," said exovent CEO Ian Joesbury. "As the patient does not need to be sedated it opens up alternative treatment options that may allow more patients with COVID-19 to be treated outside of intensive care."


Related Links:
Exovent


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