Ultrasonic surfactant nebulization with different exciting frequencies

Biophys Chem. 2000 Feb 14;84(1):35-43. doi: 10.1016/s0301-4622(99)00144-1.


Intratracheal bolus instillation of natural lung surfactant is the treatment of choice in neonatal respiratory distress syndrome and an increasing part in adults' therapy. For reasons of hemodynamics, surfactant distribution and efficiency the application mode should be improved. Nebulization seems to have some advantages but its technical realization is difficult. The aim of the present study was to investigate if ultrasonic nebulization with exciting frequencies higher than 2.8 MHz can improve the efficiency of surfactant nebulization without changing the surface-active properties of the material. Exciting frequencies of 1.7, 3.3 and 4.0 MHz were used to produce a surfactant aerosol. The phospholipid content in the liquefied aerosol and particle size distinctly dropped with higher frequencies. The surface activity was not altered in the produced aerosol and neither in the surfactant remaining in the nebulizer. Although possible, ultrasonic nebulization of surfactant suspensions is ineffective because of a striking decrease in phospholipid content.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aerosols
  • Nebulizers and Vaporizers*
  • Particle Size
  • Phospholipids / administration & dosage
  • Phospholipids / chemistry
  • Pulmonary Surfactants / administration & dosage*
  • Pulmonary Surfactants / chemistry
  • Surface Properties
  • Ultrasonics


  • Aerosols
  • Phospholipids
  • Pulmonary Surfactants