An open-source software for automatic calculation of respiratory parameters based on esophageal pressure

Respir Physiol Neurobiol. 2014 Feb 1;192:1-6. doi: 10.1016/j.resp.2013.11.007. Epub 2013 Dec 4.


Purpose: We have developed a software that automatically calculates respiratory effort indices, including intrinsic end expiratory pressure (PEEPi) and esophageal pressure-time product (PTPeso).

Materials and methods: The software first identifies respiratory periods. Clean signals are averaged to provide a reference mean cycle from which respiratory parameters are extracted. The onset of the inspiratory effort is detected automatically by looking backward from the onset of inspiratory flow to the first point where the esophageal pressure derivative is equal to zero (inflection point). PEEPi is derived from this point. Twenty-three recordings from 16 patients were analyzed with the algorithm and compared with experts' manual analysis of signals: 15 recordings were performed during spontaneous breathing, 1 during non-invasive mechanical ventilation, and 7 under both conditions.

Results: For all values, the coefficients of determinations (r(2)) exceeded 0.94 (p<0.001). The bias (mean difference) between PEEPi calculated by hand and automatically was -0.26±0.52cmH2O during spontaneous breathing and the precisions (standard deviations of the differences) was 0.52cmH2O with limits of agreement of 0.78 and -1.30cmH2O. The mean difference between PTPeso calculated by hand and automatically was -0.38±1.42cmH2Os/cycle with limits of agreement of 2.46 and -3.22cmH2Os/cycle.

Conclusions: Our program provides a reliable method for the automatic calculation of PEEPi and respiratory effort indices, which may facilitate the use of these variables in clinical practice. The software is open source and can be improved with the development and validation of new respiratory parameters.

Keywords: Acute respiratory failure; CLdyn; Ccw; EEV; Esophageal pressure; F; FRC; ID; IVC; M; MV; NIVM; PEEPi; PTPdi; PV; Pdi; Peso; Pga; Pmask; Pressure time product; Ptp; RSR; RV; Respiratory function; SB; TLC; Ti; VT; WOB; chest wall compliance; dynamic lung compliance; end-expiratory volume; female; functional residual capacity; gastric pressure; identification; inspiratory time; inspiratory vital capacity; intrinsic positive end expiratory pressure; male; mask pressure; mechanical ventilation; non-invasive mechanical ventilation; oesophageal pressure; pressure–volume; residual volume; respiratory system resistance; spontaneous breathing; tidal volume; total lung capacity; transdiaphragmatic pressure; transdiaphragmatic product time product; transpulmonary pressure; work of breathing.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Aged
  • Child
  • Electronic Data Processing / methods*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Positive-Pressure Respiration*
  • Positive-Pressure Respiration, Intrinsic / diagnosis*
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Respiration*
  • Respiratory Muscles / physiology*
  • Software*
  • Young Adult