E-ISSN 2149-2530
Original Article
Airway clearance with expiratory flow accelerator technology: effectiveness of the “free aspire” device in patients with severe COPD
1 Pulmonology and Rehabilitation Unit- - Cuasso al Monte Hospital , Italy  
2 Physiotherapy Degree Course, Insubria University - Varese, Italy  
3 SITRA – Fondazione IRCCS Ca’ Granda Ospedale Maggiore Policlinico Milan, Italy,  
4 Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation,General Hospital, Varese, Italy,  
5 Pulmonology Unit, Santa Maria Bianca Hospital, Mirandola, Modena, Italy  
6 Respiratory Diseases Unit, General Hospital Sestri Levante, Italy  
Turk Thorac J ; 5: -
DOI: 10.5152/TurkThoracJ.2018.18053
Key Words: Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, chest physiotherapy, Expiratory Flow Accelerator technology, positive expiratory pressure

Purpose: Chronic pulmonary obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is associated with a higher risk of pulmonary infections. This risk not only negatively affects patients’ quality of life, but also increases social and health costs. Hence, the need for an effective rehabilitative treatment including airway clearance. We performed a pilot study to evaluate the efficacy of a new tool for bronchial clearance based on Expiratory Flow Accelerator (EFA) technology, compared to Positive Expiratory Pressure (PEP) treatment.


Methods: 20 COPD stable patients, Global Obstructive Lung Disease 3-4 stage, were enrolled and allocated to treatment with EFA or Bubble-PEP (BP) for 20 days during a pulmonary rehabilitation program. At baseline and end of treatment the following parameters were measured: arterial blood gases (ABG), respiratory function, including peak cough expiratory flow (PCEF) and maximal inspiratory pressure (MIP) and maximal expiratory pressure (MEP), exercise capacity with the 6-minute walk test (6MWT), dyspnoea with the Medical Research Council (MRC) scale, and quality of life with St George’s Respiratory Questionnaire (SGQR).


Results: EFA showed a significant pre-post improvement in ABG and, post-treatment, a significantly greater improvement than BP in PCEF, MIP, and 6MWT.


Conclusions: EFA is a valid device compared to the BP as an adjunctive therapy for treatment of severe COPD patients.


Cite this article as: Patrizio G, D’Andria M, D’Abrosca F, et al. Airway clearance with expiratory flow accelerator technology: effectiveness of the “free aspire” device in patients with severe COPD. Turk Thorac J 2018; DOI: 10.5152/TurkThoracJ.2018.18053

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