Background: This study was designed to assess endotracheal climate in laryngectomized patients in a warm and dry environment and the effects of a heat and moisture exchanger (HME).
Methods: Endotracheal temperature and humidity were measured in 11 laryngectomized patients with a regularly used HME (Provox Normal HME; R-HME), an HME with antimicrobial filter (Provox Micron HME; F-HME), and without HME (open stoma). Measurements were performed at 32°C, 34°C, and 38°C (<25% relative humidity).
Results: Both R-HME and F-HME increased end-inspiratory humidity (AH(insp)) equally (range, 3.4 to 5.6 mg H(2)O/L). The R-HME has a cooling effect on end-inspiratory temperature (T(insp)), which is similar for all tested environmental conditions (-3.8°C); F-HME decreases T(insp) less (range, -1.3 to -0.6°C).
Conclusions: In a warm and dry environment, both R- and F-HME significantly cool and humidify inspired air. Therefore, consistent use of an HME under these climate conditions is also probably clinically beneficial.
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