A ventilator requirement index

John R. Bach, Miguel Goncalves, Michal Eisenberg, Yuka Ishikawa, Eric Altschuler, João Carlos Winck, Eugene Komaroff

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVE: To determine the efficacy of vital capacity (VC) and a proposed ventilator requirement index (VRI) for justifying ventilator prescription and use for patients with neuromuscular/chest wall diseases (NMD). DESIGN: Prospective observational study in which 319 patients with NMD, including 187 ventilator users, were separated into four groups: (1) asymptomatic, (2) abnormal specific screening factors and/or symptomatic, (3) ventilator use 8-20 hrs/day, and (4) >20 hrs/day of ventilator use. The VRI was defined as 60 × Ti/(Ttot) × (Vt/VC) × RR, where Ti = inspiratory time of one breath (secs), Ttot = total time of one breath (secs), Vt = tidal volume (ml) at rest, VC = vital capacity (ml), and RR = respiratory rate. RESULTS: The overall analysis of variance F-tests and post hoc pairwise contrasts were significant (P < 0.001) for differences in the VC and VRI across groups. Thus, VC and VRI are independent predictors of group membership. Satisfying VC or VRI criteria signaled the highest number of patients benefiting from ventilator use. CONCLUSIONS: The prescription of one or two ventilators can be justified by both VC and VRI, with the combination being most sensitive.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)285-291
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican Journal of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2008

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation
  • Rehabilitation


  • Home Mechanical Ventilation
  • Neuromuscular Disease
  • Noninvasive Mechanical Ventilation
  • Respiratory Insufficiency
  • Ventilator Requirement Index


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