The CPAP Hood

An ICU weapon against COVID-19

31st July 2020

The CPAP hood (or helmet) has significant clinical value for the management of COVID-19 patients with ARDs. According to Dejan Radovanovic et al in their recent publication ‘Helmet CPAP to Treat Acute Hypoxemic Respiratory Failure in Patients with COVID-19: A Management Strategy Proposal;’

“The application of CPAP with the helmet can represent a valid pulmonary support in the adequate setting and with simple monitoring tools, making it a suitable bridge to ICU or a supportive treatment to improve patients’ outcomes.”


Read the full paper by D. Radovanovic et al here.

Avoiding Intubation

Reducing the number of intubated patients can significantly alleviate the pressure on both ICU staff and equipment.

According to R. J. Ing et al in the editorial ‘Role of Helmet-Delivered Non-invasive Pressure Support Ventilation in COVID-19 Patients’ suggested that the use of the helmet could mean endotracheal intubation is avoided.

“With the use of the helmet, the need for early rapid intubation can be delayed safely while a patient is observed carefully for any improvement in disease or deterioration in condition. This may enable endotracheal intubation to be avoided.”


Read the full paper by R. J. Ing et al here.

Patel et al studied the ‘Effect of Non-invasive Ventilation Delivered by Helmet vs Face Mask on the Rate of Endotracheal Intubation in Patients With Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome.’

Their research found that the intubation rate was 61.5% for the face mask group and 18.2% for the helmet group. The helmet was also associated with improved ventilator-free days and significantly reduced ICU length of stay and 90-day mortality.


Read the full paper by B. K. Patel here.

Improved Patient Comfort

The CPAP hood is well tolerated for prolonged periods, reducing the need for sedation and enabling the patient to remain responsive. The hood does not need to be removed for eating and drinking and can also reduce the discomfort and risks associated with extended face mask use such as facial ulcers and claustrophobia.

According to A. S. Rali et al in their case series,
‘Helmet CPAP revisited in COVID-19 pneumonia: A case series’

“The helmet does not have any pressure points on the face, thereby reducing patient discomfort and improving device tolerance without the risk of skin necrosis. The helmet allows the patient to see, read, talk, and interact more easily than other NIV respiratory devices.”


Read the full paper by A. S. Rali et al here.

Enhanced Protection

As contaminated droplets remain in the hood, with no or minimum air leaks, the potential for healthcare workers to be exposed to pathogens is very low.

A. S. Rali et al highlighted significant concern about the exposure of health care workers to aerosolized viral pathogens when providing NIPPV with a facemask.

“The helmet interface achieves the dual objective of providing NIPPV while also minimizing aerosolization”

R. J. Ing et al discuss further;

“The helmet allows for a safe means of containing droplet and aerolisation of virus particles by the use of a heat-moisture exchange filter on the inspiratory and expiratory limbs of the helmet.”

Dejan Radovanovic et al agree;

“A reduced room contamination may also improve patients’ clinical management, increasing the safety of the healthcare workers involved in the assistance during the COVID-19 pandemic.”

FD140i with CPAP Hood / Helmet

In line with the launch of our new FD140i we are expanding our range of patient interfaces to include CPAP Hoods. Register to find out more.

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