Intraoperative Lung-Protective Ventilation Trends and Practice Patterns: A Report from the Multicenter Perioperative Outcomes Group

Anesth Analg. 2015 Nov;121(5):1231-9. doi: 10.1213/ANE.0000000000000940.


Background: The use of an intraoperative lung-protective ventilation strategy through tidal volume (TV) size reduction and positive end-expiratory pressure (PEEP) has been increasingly investigated. In this article, we describe the current intraoperative lung-protective ventilation practice patterns and trends.

Methods: By using the Multicenter Perioperative Outcomes Group database, we identified all general endotracheal anesthetics from January 2008 through December 2013 at 10 institutions. The following data were calculated: (1) percentage of patients receiving TV > 10 mL/kg predicted body weight (PBW); (2) median initial and overall TV in mL/kg PBW and; (3) percentage of patients receiving PEEP ≥ 5 cm H2O. The data were analyzed at 3-month intervals. Interinstitutional variability was assessed.

Results: A total of 330,823 patients met our inclusion criteria for this study. During the study period, the percentage of patients receiving TV > 10 mL/kg PBW was reduced for all patients (26% to 14%) and in the subpopulations of obese (41% to 25%), short stature (52% to 36%), and females (39% to 24%; all P values <0.001). There was a significant reduction in TV size (8.90-8.20 mL/kg PBW, P < 0.001). There was also a statistically significant but clinically irrelevant difference between initial and overall TV size (8.65 vs 8.63 mL/kg PBW, P < 0.001). Use of PEEP ≥ 5 cm H2O increased during the study period (25%-45%, P < 0.001). TV usage showed significant interinstitutional variability (P < 0.001).

Conclusions: Although decreasing, a significant percentage of patients are ventilated with TV > 10 mL/kg PBW, especially if they are female, obese, or of short stature. The use of PEEP ≥ 5 cm H2O has increased significantly. Creating awareness of contemporary practice patterns and demonstrating the efficacy of lung-protective ventilation are still needed to optimize intraoperative ventilation.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Female
  • Humans
  • Intraoperative Care / methods
  • Intraoperative Care / trends*
  • Lung / physiology*
  • Male
  • Positive-Pressure Respiration / methods
  • Positive-Pressure Respiration / trends*
  • Research Report / trends*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Tidal Volume / physiology*
  • Treatment Outcome