Using a high-flow respiratory system (Vapotherm) within a high dependency setting

Nurs Crit Care. 2008 Nov-Dec;13(6):298-304. doi: 10.1111/j.1478-5153.2008.00299.x.


Background: Vapotherm 2000i is a non-invasive high-flow respiratory support system used mainly in the treatment of type 1 respiratory failure. It uses a mixture of oxygen and air to deliver a set concentration via nasal cannula (or tracheostomy mask). The advantage of this system is the high humidity achieved using the integral heated water system. The system has been used in neonatal practice as a replacement for conventional continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) but there is little published research within the adult setting about its use.

Aim: This study discusses the indications for the use of this non-invasive high-flow respiratory support system, the system set up, the benefits and complications of the system. AUDIT DESIGN: An audit of 72 patients was undertaken within the Surgical High Dependency Unit that collected data on the types of patient receiving the therapy, its effectiveness and patient experience. AUDIT FINDINGS: The audit demonstrated reduced respiratory rate and improvement in oxygenation for treated patients.

Conclusion: A non-invasive high-flow respiratory support system can be effective at improving oxygenation in hypoxic patients. Patients were generally satisfied with the system and the system seems suitable for use in an adult surgical high dependency setting.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Algorithms
  • Attitude to Health
  • Blood Gas Analysis
  • Clinical Nursing Research
  • Critical Care / methods*
  • Critical Care / psychology
  • Decision Trees
  • Equipment Design
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Nebulizers and Vaporizers*
  • Nursing Assessment
  • Nursing Audit
  • Nursing Methodology Research
  • Oxygen Inhalation Therapy / adverse effects
  • Oxygen Inhalation Therapy / instrumentation*
  • Oxygen Inhalation Therapy / nursing
  • Oxygen Inhalation Therapy / psychology
  • Patient Selection
  • Respiratory Insufficiency / etiology
  • Respiratory Insufficiency / metabolism
  • Respiratory Insufficiency / therapy*
  • Tracheostomy
  • Treatment Outcome