What is Partial Liquid Ventilation (PLV)?  Why put liquid into the lungs, isn't fluid buildup in the lungs part of the ARDS problem?

 

Partial liquid ventilation (PLV) involves filling the lungs with a fluid.   This fluid is perfluorocarbon, also called Liquivent or Perflubron.  The liquid has some unique properties.  It has a very low surface tension, similar to surfactant, a substance that is produced in your lungs and prevents the alveoli from collapsing and sticking together during exhalation.  It also has a high density, oxygen readily diffuses through it, and it may have some anti-inflammatory properties.  In PLV, the lungs are filled with the liquid, the patient is then ventilated with a conventional ventilator using a protective lung ventilation strategy.   This is called partial liquid ventilation.   The hope is that the liquid will help the transport of oxygen to parts of the lung that are flooded and filled with debris, help remove this debris and open up more alveoli improving lung function.  The study of PLV involves comparison to protocolized ventilator strategy designed to minimize lung damage.

 

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