Noninvasive positive pressure ventilation in acute asthmatic attack

A. Soroksky*, E. Klinowski, E. Ilgyev, A. Mizrachi, A. Miller, T. M.Ben Yehuda, I. Shpirer, Y. Leonov

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Asthma is characterised by reversible airway obstruction. In most patients, control of disease activity is easily achieved. However, in a small minority, asthma may be fatal. Between the two extremes lie patients with severe asthmatic attacks, refractory to standard treatment. These patients are at an increased risk of recurrent severe attacks, with respiratory failure, and mechanical ventilation. Invasive mechanical ventilation of the asthmatic patient is associated with a higher risk of complications and, therefore, is a measure of last resort. Noninvasive positive pressure ventilation (NPPV) is another treatment modality that may be beneficial in patients with severe asthmatic attack who are at an increased risk of developing respiratory failure. These patients have the potential to benefit from early respiratory support in the form of NPPV. However, reports of NPPV in asthmatic patients are scarce, and its usage in asthmatic attacks is, therefore, still controversial. Only a few reports of NPPV in asthma have been published over the last decade. These studies mostly involve small numbers of patients and those who have problematic methodology. In this article we review the available evidence for NPPV in asthma and try to formulate our recommendations for NPPV application in asthma based on the available evidence and reports. Copyright

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)39-45
Number of pages7
JournalEuropean Respiratory Review
Issue number115
StatePublished - 1 Mar 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Asthma
  • Asthma clinical care
  • Noninvasive mechanical ventilation


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