Non-invasive therapies and diagnostics on the increase
11 February 2009
Non-invasive methods are on the increase for medical treatment,
patient monitoring and diagnostics as they can help to avoid infections
and mean less pain and stress for patients. Dräger offers a variety of
products for non-invasive application in clinics.
If a patient is delivered to the clinic with pulmonary complications,
the clinic has to decide which type of therapy is suitable. In addition
to purely medical aspects other criteria also play an important role
such as: the mental and physical stress on the patient due to the
treatment, the time it takes to implement a measure and the overall
economics of the procedure.
Non-invasive respiration is a form of therapy that is usually not
only more pleasant for the patient but also reduces the risk of
infection, and is therefore more economic. It is gradually being
recognised that non-invasive respiration should be used wherever
possible in day-to-day clinical use. This view is now also reflected in
The reason for this recommendation is that invasive respiration is
accompanied by the risk of ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAP) — one
of the most frequently occurring hospital-acquired infections in the US
and in Europe. These complications not
only impact on patients but also on the budget: infections acquired in
US hospitals cost $29 million per year.
Non-invasive applications in other areas
Non-invasive measures are generally becoming the focus of attention
for preventing hospital-acquired infections. This is because each
intervention, eg with needles or catheters, opens up a primary entrance
point for infections. Furthermore, in a situation that is already
stressful for patients, invasive procedures usually cause pain and
The same can be true for diagnostics and monitoring. However, whereas
producing EKGs and monitoring oxygen saturation (SpO2 levels) and
expiratory CO2 levels have been monitored non-invasively for a long
time, it is now possible to continuously monitor arterial blood pressure
Dräger offers comprehensive solutions both for non-invasive
respiration and monitoring. For example, the Carina respiration
apparatus, in particular, fulfils the requirements for non-invasive
respiration, but virtually all other Dräger respiration devices offer
this option. The NovaStar face mask can be individually adapted to the
patient’s facial contours and gel cushion ensures a tight fit, thereby
minimizing leakage and skin lesions.
Dräger’s Infinity CNAP SmartPod offers a method of measuring arterial
blood pressure via a sensor sleeve that is placed over the patient’s
finger. The Infinity etCO2 pod can be connected to the respiration tube
system and measures the CO2 content of the exhaled air in the main and
1. For example in Germany, see: Schönhofer,
Bernd et al.: Nicht invasive Beatmung bei akuter respiratorischer
Insuffizienz (Non-invasive respiration for acute respiratory
insufficiency). In: Deutsches Ärzteblatt 2008; 105(24): 424-433.
2. Prevention of hospital-acquired
pneumonia — notification by the Commission for Hospital Hygiene and
Infection Prevention at the Robert Koch Institute. In: Federal Health
Bulletin – Health Research – Health Protection, 2000, 43:302-9.
3. Institute of Medicine. To Err is
Human: Building a Safer Health System. Washington DC, National
Academy Press, 2000.
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