It is generally recommended that an esophageal balloon-catheter possess an adequate frequency response up to 15 Hz, such that parameters of respiratory mechanics may be quantified with precision. In our experience, however, we have observed that some commercially available systems do not display an ideal frequency response (<8-10 Hz). We therefore investigated whether the poor frequency response of a commercially available esophageal catheter may be adequately compensated using two numerical techniques: 1) an exponential model correction, and 2) Wiener deconvolution. These two numerical techniques were performed on a commercial balloon-catheter interfaced with 0, 1, and 2 lengths of extension tubing (90 cm each), referred to as configurations L0, L90, and L180, respectively. The frequency response of the balloon-catheter in these configurations was assessed by empirical transfer function analysis, and its “working” range was defined as the frequency beyond which more than 5% amplitude and/or phase distortion was observed. The working frequency range of the uncorrected balloon-catheter extended up to only 10 Hz for L0, and progressively worsened with additional tubing length (L90 = 3 Hz, L180 = 2 Hz). Although both numerical methods of correction adequately enhanced the working frequency range of the balloon-catheter to beyond 25 Hz for all length configurations (L0, L90, and L180), Wiener deconvolution consistently provided more accurate corrections. Our data indicate that Wiener deconvolution provides a superior correction of the balloon-catheter's dynamic response, and is relatively more robust to extensions in catheter tube length compared with the exponential correction method.
- esophageal pressure
- frequency response
- Wiener deconvolution
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