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Evid Based Nurs 8:106 doi:10.1136/ebn.8.4.106
  • Treatment

Review: various devices for delivery of aerosol treatment can be equally efficacious

Comparison of the effectiveness of different devices for delivery of aerosol treatment*

Patients and clinical setting Comparison Number of trials (n) Outcome Weighted mean difference (95% CI)
*ED  =  emergency department; ICU  =  intensive care unit; MDI  =  metered dose inhaler; DPI  =  dry powder inhaler; FEV1  =  forced expiratory volume in 1 second. CI defined in glossary.
†All but 1 of the trials were clinical laboratory trials.
Adults and children in the ED or ICU Nebuliser v MDI + spacer/holding chamber for short acting β2 agonists 9 (510) FEV1 0.13 (−0.04 to 0.31)
11 (708) Symptom scores 0.01 (−0.32 to 0.34)
Adults in the ED/ICU Continuous v intermittent nebulisation for short acting β2 agonists 3 (137) FEV1 0.07 (−0.63 to 0.77)
Adult and child inpatients Nebuliser v MDI + spacer/holding chamber for short acting β2 agonists 3 (102) FEV1 0.05 (−0.34 to 0.44)
2 (91) Symptom scores −0.04 (−0.46 to 0.37)
Adult outpatients DPI v MDI + spacer/holding chamber for corticosteroids† 2 (44) FEV1 0.09 (−0.33 to 0.51)
4 (257) Symptom scores 0.08 (−0.47 to 0.62)

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