Model System:


Reference Type:

Accession No.:


Spinal Cord

Year, Volume, Issue, Page(s):

, 59, 6, 618-625


Study design: Retrospective cohort study.

Objectives: The primary objective of this study was to evaluate safety and efficacy of higher tidal volumes (HVt) compared to moderate Vt (MVt) in people with spinal cord injury (SCI) admitted to acute inpatient rehabilitation (AIR) facility on mechanical ventilation via tracheostomy.

Setting: AIR facility in the United States.

Methods: Eighty-four adults with SCI were divided into MVt group if maximum Vt received in AIR was <15 ml/kg predicted body weight (PBW) and HVt group if maximum Vt was >15 ml/kg PBW. Primary outcomes were incidence of pneumonia and composite pulmonary adverse events (pneumonia, weaning failure, or acute care transfers due to respiratory complications). Secondary outcomes were AIR preweaning days defined as time from AIR admission to beginning of weaning, weaning days defined as days from start to end of weaning, and AIR ventilator days calculated as days on ventilator from AIR admission to discharge.

Results: MVt was utilized in 50 patients and HVt was utilized in 34 patients. The risk of pneumonia in HVt group was 4.3 times higher [95% confidence interval (CI): 1.5-12] compared to MVt group. Odds of pulmonary adverse events in HVt group was 5.4 times higher (CI: 1.8-17) compared to MVt group. There was no difference in preweaning days, weaning days, or AIR ventilator days between the two groups.

Conclusions: Our data suggest that HVt is associated with increased risk of pneumonia and higher odds of pulmonary adverse events in tracheostomized patients with SCI which warrants further investigation.


Radha Korupolu, Argyrios Stampas, Hannah Uhlig-Reche, Ellia Ciammaichella, Patrick John Mollett, Emmanuel Chigozie Achilike, Claudia Pedroza

Participating Centers: