What Is a Ventilator?
is a machine that supports breathing. Get oxygen into the lungs.
Remove carbon dioxide from the body. (CO2 is a waste gas that can be toxic.)
Help people breathe easier & Breathe for people who have lost all ability to breathe on their own.The medicines used to induce anesthesia can disrupt normal breathing. A ventilator helps make sure that you continue breathing during surgery.
A ventilator also may be used during treatment for a serious lung disease that affects normal breathing.
Some people may need to use ventilators long term or for the rest of their lives.Life-critical systemWho Needs a Ventilator?
Ventilators most often are used:
During surgery if you're under anesthesia (that is, if you're given medicine that makes you sleep and/or causes a loss of feeling)
If a disease or condition impairs your lung function
If you have general anesthesia during surgery, you'll likely be connected to a ventilator. The medicines used to induce anesthesia can disrupt normal breathing. A ventilator helps make sure that you continue breathing during surgery.
After surgery, you may not even know you were connected to a ventilator. The only sign may be a slight sore throat for a short time. The sore throat is caused by the tube that connects the ventilator to your airway.
Once the anesthesia wears off and you begin breathing on your own, the ventilator is disconnected. The tube in your throat also is taken out. This usually happens before you completely wake up from surgery.
However, depending on the type of surgery you have, you could stay on a ventilator for a few hours to several days after your surgery. Most people who have anesthesia during surgery only need a ventilator for a short time, though.
For Impaired Lung Function
You may need a ventilator if a disease, condition, or other factor has impaired your breathing. Although you might be able to breathe on your own, it's very hard work. You may feel short of breath and uncomfortable. A ventilator can help ease the work of breathing. People who can't breathe on their own also use ventilators.
Many diseases, conditions, and factors can affect lung function. Examples include:
Pneumonia (nu-MO-ne-ah) and other infections
COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) or other lung diseases
Upper spinal cord injuries, polio, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), myasthenia gravis, and other diseases or factors that affect the nerves and muscles involved in breathing
Brain injury or stroke
Because the failure of a mechanical ventilation system may result in death, it is classed as a life-critical system, and precautions must be taken to ensure that mechanical ventilation systems are highly reliable. This includes their power-supply provision.