Inappropriate ventilator triggering caused by an in-line suction catheter

Intensive Care Med. 2002 Apr;28(4):515-9. doi: 10.1007/s00134-002-1239-0. Epub 2002 Feb 22.


Objective: To examine the phenomenon of inappropriate triggering caused by an in-line suction catheter.

Design: We used a test lung to assess inappropriate triggering in four ventilators with both pressure and flow triggering.

Results: With pressure triggering, inappropriate triggering occurred only in the presence of PEEP. However, with flow triggering, inappropriate triggering occurred both with and without PEEP. Inappropriate triggering did not occur in a model of severe airflow obstruction.

Conclusion: In-line suction catheters may lead to inappropriate triggering and potentially dangerous increases in delivered ventilation.

MeSH terms

  • Equipment Design
  • Equipment Failure
  • Humans
  • Lung
  • Models, Anatomic
  • Positive-Pressure Respiration
  • Respiration, Artificial
  • Suction / instrumentation*
  • Ventilators, Mechanical*