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Perfluorocarbon species and nebulizer type influence aerosolization rate and particle size of perfluorocarbon aerosol

Journal of Critical Care
Publication Date
DOI: 10.1016/j.jcrc.2004.02.008


Abstract Purpose: Aerosolization of perfluorocarbons (PFC) has been proven beneficial in vivo. The present in vitro study was performed to investigate, how PFC-aerosolization is affected by type of nebulizer and PFC properties. Materials and Methods: Aerosolization rate was studied of 4 different PFC that were nebulized using 3 different jet nebulizers (operating at different flows: 4.1; 7.1; 13 l/min) and one ultrasonic nebulizer. Distribution of aerosol particle size was determined with a laser diffraction device. Results: Between the studied nebulizers, considerable differences in the aerosolization rate were found. Aerosolization rate was significantly lower for PFOB (0.48–1.24 mL/min), when compared with PF 5080, RM 101 and FC 77 (1.33–4.75 mL/min). The ultrasonic nebulizer did not generate an aerosol but rather PFC vapor. Lowest mass median diameter (MMD) was found for PFOB and varied between the jet nebulizers from 2.2 and 3.7 μm, with a small range in particle size (maximum of 7.3 μm). FC 77 had highest MMD (3.5 to 9.2 μm) and greatest range of particle size of up to 13 μm. Conclusions: Our in vitro data show that aerosolization rate depends mainly on density of PFC and the flow of nebulizer. Particle size distribution is affected by PFC properties. Our result may explain controversial results of published in vivo studies.

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