Electrical Impedance Tomography and its Perspectives in Intensive Care Medicine
EIT is a new, portable imaging technique which is increasingly being considered as a future tool for evaluation of the immediate effects of a change in ventilation or other therapeutic intervention in critically ill patients. The method is suitable for monitoring regional lung function directly at the bedside. Steady advances in the development of EIT technology over the past 20 years makes a routine application in a clinical setting in the next decade possible. Nevertheless, further development of both EIT hardware and software is necessary to increase the quality of data, user-friendliness, and clinical acceptance. Proof of clinical efficiency has to be provided. Results of several studies indicate that EIT might be of benefit in optimizing ventilator therapy and minimizing the incidence of ventilator-associated lung injury but this has to be proven in larger clinical studies.
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