Electrical impedance tomography: Usefulness for respiratory physiotherapy in critical illnesses

Ricardo Arriagada, María Consuelo Bachmann, Constanza San Martin, Michela Rauseo, Denise Battaglini*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Respiratory physiotherapy, including the management of invasive mechanical ventilation (MV) and noninvasive mechanical ventilation (NIV), is a key supportive intervention for critically ill patients. MV has potential for inducing ventilator-induced lung injury (VILI) as well as long-term complications related to prolonged bed rest, such as post-intensive care syndrome and intensive care unit acquired weakness. Physical and respiratory therapy, developed by the critical care team, in a timely manner, has been shown to prevent these complications. In this pathway, real-time bedside monitoring of changes in pulmonary aeration and alveolar gas distribution associated with postural positioning, respiratory physiotherapy techniques and changes in MV strategies can be crucial in guiding these procedures, providing safe therapy and prevention of potential harm to the patient. Along this path, electrical impedance tomography (EIT) has emerged as a new key non-invasive bedside strategy free of radiation, to allow visualization of lung recruitment. This review article presents the main and potential applications of EIT in relation to physiotherapy techniques in the ICU setting.

Translated title of the contributionTítulo provisional: Tomografía por impedancia eléctrica y fisioterapia respiratoria
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)403-410
Number of pages8
JournalMedicina Intensiva
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2024
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2024 Elsevier España, S.L.U. y SEMICYUC


  • Critical care
  • Electrical impedance tomography
  • Intensive care
  • Mechanical ventilation
  • Mobilization
  • Physical therapy
  • Physiotherapy


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