Non-invasive ventilation, or NIV, is a mode of respiratory support that does not involve the insertion of a tube into the trachea (windpipe). This type of ventilation can be used for a variety of reasons, including the treatment of acute respiratory failure, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and post-operative care.
In many cases, non-invasive ventilation is used as a first line of treatment before invasive ventilation is required. This type of ventilator support can be delivered through a variety of different devices, including nasal masks, full face masks, and mouthpieces. Non-invasive ventilation has been shown to be effective in decreasing the need for intubation and mechanical ventilation, as well as reducing the length of hospital stay.
If your doctor suggests you have fluid build-up in your lungs, respiratory muscle weakness, ventilator-associated pneumonia, sleep apnea, or severe symptoms of COVID-19 you may need non-invasive ventilation.
NIV is generally well-tolerated and has fewer complications than invasive ventilation. Additionally, NIV can be used as a bridge to more invasive forms of support, or it may be the only ventilatory support needed. NIV is also associated with improved patient satisfaction due to the avoidance of an endotracheal tube.
Positive pressure ventilation involves the delivery of air or oxygen through a mask or nasal prongs at a higher pressure than the surrounding atmosphere. This type of NIV is often used for patients with COPD, as it can help to unload the ventilatory muscles and improve gas exchange.
Negative pressure ventilation delivers air or oxygen through a mask or nasal prongs at a lower pressure than the surrounding atmosphere. This type of NIV is often used for patients with neuromuscular diseases, as it can help to prevent respiratory muscle fatigue.