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Mechanical Ventilation Alarms & Causes
High pressure limit
Secretions, coughing or gagging. Pt fighting ventilator (vent asyncrony). Condensate (water) in tubing. Kinked or compressed tubing. Increased resistance (bronchospasm). Decreased compliance (pulmonary edema, pneumothorax)
Low pressure limit
Total or partial disconnect. Loss of airway (total or partial extubation). ET tube/trach cuff leak (pt speaking, grunting)
Respiratory arrest. Oversedation. Change in pt condition. Loss of airway (total or partial extubation)
High tidal volume, minute ventilation, or respiratory rate
Pain, anxiety. Change in pt condition. Excess condensate in tubing (false reading)
Low tidal volume or minute ventilation
Change in pt breathing efforts (rate & volume). Pt is disconnected, loose connection, or leak in circuit. ET tube/trach cuff leak (pt speaking, grunting). Insufficient gas flow
Ventilator inoperative or low battery
Machine malfunction. Unplugged, power failure, or internal battery not charged.