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In patients recovering from surgery, the goals of mechanical ventilation are to open collapsed alveoli and improve gas exchange while minimizing barotrauma to the lungs. This single-center randomized clinical trial by Leme and colleagues randomized 320 patients requiring mechanical ventilation after cardiac surgery to undergo lung inflation maneuvers at higher vs lower airway pressures to recruit alveoli while maintaining a low tidal volume to minimize barotrauma. The patients who received lung inflation at higher pressures had less severe pulmonary complications. In an Editorial, Neto and Schultz discuss the benefits and harms of ventilation strategies for patients with severe lung injury.
Highlights. JAMA. 2017;317(14):1391–1393. doi:10.1001/jama.2016.13075
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