Use of a shared canister protocol for the delivery of metered-dose inhalers in mechanically ventilated subjects

Mollie Gowan, Jennifer Bushwitz, Peggy Watts, Patty C. Silver, Mark Jackson, Nicholas Hampton, Marin H. Kollef

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND: Mechanically ventilated patients often need bronchodilators administered via a metered-dose inhaler (MDI). Unfortunately, there are no data examining the impact of shared canister delivery of MDI therapy in mechanically ventilated patients. METHODS: A prospective trial was conducted with subjects assigned to shared canister MDI therapy or single-patient canister MDI therapy. Outcomes assessed were occurrence of ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAP), hospital mortality, length of stay, ventilator-associated events, and MDI costs. RESULTS: Among 486 screened patients, 353 were included for analysis of which 201 (56.9%) received shared canister MDI therapy and 152 (43.1%) received single-patient canister therapy. VAP (7.0% vs 4.6%, P =. 35), hospital mortality (21.9% vs 20.4%, P =. 73), and ventilator days (median [interquartile range] 3.1 [0.9-7.5] d vs 2.7 [1.2–7.1] d, P=.62) were similar between the shared canister and single-patient canister groups. We did not observe clinically important differences for ventilator-associated events between study groups in our logistic regression analysis (P =. 07). There was a savings of $217/subject in the shared canister group due to the use of 299 fewer MDIs. CONCLUSIONS: Our study found that shared canister MDI therapy compared with single-patient MDI use was associated with a significant cost savings and similar rates of VAP, hospital mortality, and length of stay but a greater prevalence of ventilatorassociated events. This finding suggests that shared canister delivery of MDIs may be a cost-effective practice in mechanically ventilated patients. Based on our findings, further studies examining the overall safety of shared canister use in mechanically ventilated patients seem warranted before recommending their routine use. registration NCT01935388.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1285-1292
Number of pages8
JournalRespiratory care
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 1 2016


  • Common canister
  • Mechanical ventilation
  • Outcome


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