Bag Valve Masks

Bag valve masks can be used to ventilate an unconscious patient. Use the bag valve mask to ventilate the patient’s lungs if they are breathing inadequately. We would always try and use an airway adjunct to enable us to get good ventilation. Typical bag valve mask has a chamber which holds approximately 1,200 mL of air. And this is important to remember, that when we ventilating a patient, normal tidal volume is only about 500. So, an adequate squeeze of the bag would just be to expel half of the amount of air. And actually, when you are ventilating a patient, try to think about how we breathe normally. We don’t suddenly take a gasp; we breathe gently in and exhale slowly. And this, we should replicate when we are ventilating our patient’s lungs. Failure to ventilate in a similar way to how we breathe would result in the epiglottis potentially closing and diverting down into the stomach, and when the stomach‘s full, it will empty and the contents will come up into the patient’s mouth, causing us further problems. So, always try and replicate the way that we breathe when ventilating a patient.

Bag Valve Masks

Bag valve masks should form a seal around the patient’s face. A really good technique for achieving a seal first and every time is to hold your finger and thumb in a C-shape over the mask keeping three fingers free. And then this part, the pointy part of the mask, goes over the bridge of the nose, and then roll the mask down onto the patient’s face, securing it with those three fingers over the hard bone of the mandible. Tilt the head back and we should…

And a normal respiratory rate or ventilatory rate for an adult would be approximately once every five or six seconds. Make sure to see the rise and fall of the chest there, which confirms that air is going in and out of the lungs.

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