Noninvasive ventilation (NIV) can be an effective form of mechanical ventilation for some but not all patients. It should not be used if certain contraindications are present.


Absolute contraindications

(1) inability to fit an appropriate breathing mask

(2) respiratory arrest


Relative complications:

(1) 2 or more organ failures (including respiratory failure)

(2) recent surgery on the upper gastrointestinal tract or upper airway

(3) inability to handle secretions

(4) impaired swallowing

(5) uncooperative behavior, agitation

(6) medically unstable

(7) inability to protect the airway



• Medical instability may include uncontrollable upper gastrointestinal bleeding, cardiac arrhythmias, cardiac ischemia or shock.


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