Semin Respir Crit Care Med. 2020 Dec;41(6):786-797. doi: 10.1055/s-0040-1712101. Epub 2020 Jul 28.
Noninvasive ventilation (NIV) is considered to be the standard of care for the management of acute hypercapnic respiratory failure in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease exacerbation. It can be delivered safely in any dedicated setting, from emergency rooms to high dependency or intensive care units and wards. NIV helps improving dyspnea and gas exchange, reduces the need for endotracheal intubation, and morbidity and mortality rates. It is therefore recognized as the gold standard in this condition. High-flow nasal therapy helps improving ventilatory efficiency and reducing the work of breathing in patients with severe chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Early studies indicate that some patients with acute hypercapnic respiratory failure can be managed with high-flow nasal therapy, but more information is needed before specific recommendations for this therapy can be made. Therefore, high-flow nasal therapy use should be individualized in each particular situation and institution, taking into account resources, and local and personal experience with all respiratory support therapies.