Butz M, Wollinsky KH, Wiedemuth-Catrinescu U, Sperfeld A, Winter S, Mehrkens HH, Ludolph AC, Schreiber H: Longitudinal effects of noninvasive positive-pressure ventilation in patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Am J Phys Med Rehabil 2003;82:597–604.
To evaluate the duration of benefit on symptoms, quality of life, and survival derived from the use of noninvasive positive-pressure ventilation by patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.
In this prospective, cohort study, 30 of 36 consecutively referred symptomatic patients tolerated nightly noninvasive positive-pressure ventilation and undertook pulmonary function testing and 12 symptom and quality-of-life instruments concerning sleep quality, daytime sleepiness, physical fatigue, mental fatigue, and depression that were administered during a 10-mo period.
With treatment, there was a significant improvement in the majority of patients in sleep quality, daytime sleepiness, physical fatigue, and depression; however, significant improvements lasted for up to 10 mo only in sleep quality. Partial pressure of arterial oxygen, partial pressure of arterial carbon dioxide, and oxyhemoglobin saturation remained stable or even improved for up to 7 mo during use of part-time noninvasive positive-pressure ventilation. A total of 14 patients had survival prolonged by continuous dependence on noninvasive positive-pressure ventilation.
Noninvasive positive-pressure ventilation provides a long-lasting benefit on symptoms and quality of life indicators for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis patients and should be offered to all patients with symptoms of sleep disordered breathing or inspiratory muscle dysfunction. It can also prolong tracheostomy-free survival.