Monitoring respiration on the ICU
The patient on a ventilator is sick. In addition, the very act of putting him on the ventilator deprives him of his normal ability to control his own ventilation and, through it, his PCO2 and pH. This makes it particularly important for the doctor who attends the patient to know what is actually going on in his respiratory system. Guessing is not good enough. The physician needs precise, quantitative data.
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