Question: A couple of questions in regards to CPAP use for acute pulmonary edema. I wondered if the medical directive intended for CPAP use in other cases of acute pulmonary edema other than the situation arising from heart failure. For example secondary drowning several hours after initial insult or inhalation injuries in the absence of facial or thorax burns that could be seen with chemicals or fire? It would be reasonable to assume that these insults would cause trauma to the lung tissue and increase the risks for developing pneumothorax as a complication, however in instances like this would CPAP be recommended, beneficial or allowed.

Second part would be the use of CPAP for those with complex medical issues such as those patients with Hx of asthma, COPD and CHF. If you where to treat with CPAP for say evidence of acute pulmonary edema and crackles resolved, but wheezes remained would there be benefit to consider ventolin for bronchoconstriction via MDI or neb through the CPAP device? Typically ventolin is not considered in these instances but auscultation in the prehospital setting has limitations and with complex medical histories cardiac asthma and COPD exacerbation may also be part of the overall medical situation.

I thank you for your comments and insights.