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Respiratory Monitoring

Martin J. Tobin, MD
JAMA. 1990;264(2):244-251. doi:10.1001/jama.1990.03450020096034.
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SIGNIFICANT improvements in respiratory monitoring have occurred over the last decade based on both technologic advances and a better understanding of the pathophysiologic characteristics of respiratory failure.1 The major goals of monitoring are to provide alarms that alert the patient's attendants of a significant change in his/her condition, providing an opportunity for the timely institution of lifesaving measures, to aid with diagnosis and therapy, and to create trends that assist in assessing therapeutic response and predicting prognosis. Since many patients admitted to an intensive care unit never receive interventional therapy, the possibility arises that intensive care unit costs could be decreased by the employment of intermediate care units, where patients are admitted for monitoring until a need for interventional therapy has been demonstrated.2-6 The features of an ideal monitoring system are listed in Table 1. In considering the various monitoring devices, it is useful to group the phenomena

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The American Medical Association is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians. The AMA designates this journal-based CME activity for a maximum of 1 AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM per course. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. Physicians who complete the CME course and score at least 80% correct on the quiz are eligible for AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM.
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