"improving intensive care in Scotland"

Common causes of a reduction in minute ventilation

Lungs e.g. COPD*, bronchospasm

Thoracic cage e.g. ankylosing spondylitis

Muscles e.g. myopathy

Neuromuscular junction e.g. myasthenia gravis

Nerves e.g. MND

Spinal Cord e.g. trauma

Brain Stem e.g. CVA, drugs

* In COPD hypoventilation occurs due to loss of lung tissue and elasticity. This leads to chest hyperexpansion and the inability to ventilate adequately. Loss of lung tissue also leads to an increase in dead space. In addition, bronchospasm might contribute to the respiratory compromise seen in COPD patients.

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