Primate pleuroesophageal tissue barrier frequency response and esophageal pressure waveform bandwidth in health and acute lung injury

Craig G. Hartford, Johan M. Van Schalkwyk, Geoffrey G. Rogers*, Martin J. Turner

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Dynamic intraesophageal pressure (Pes) is used to estimate intrapleural pressure (Ppl) to calculate lung compliance and resistance. This study investigated the nonhuman primate Ppl-Pes tissue barrier frequency response and the dynamic response requirements of Pes manometers. Methods: In healthy monkeys and monkeys with acute lung injury undergoing ventilation, simultaneous Ppl and Pes were measured directly to determine the Ppl-Pes tissue barrier amplitude frequency response, using the swept-sine wave technique. The bandwidths of physiologic Pes waveforms acquired during conventional mechanical ventilation were calculated using digital low-pass signal filtering. Results: The Ppl-Pes tissue barrier is amplitude-uniform within the bandwidth of conventional Pes waveforms in healthy and acute lung injury lungs, and does not significantly attenuate Ppl-Pes signal transmission between 1 and 40 Hz. At Pes frequencies higher than conventional clinical regions of interest the Ppl-Pes barrier resonates significantly, is pressure amplitude dependent at low-pressure offsets, and is significantly altered by acute lung injury. Allowing for 5% or less Pes waveform error, the maximum Pes bandwidths during conventional ventilation were 1.9 Hz and 3.4 Hz for physiologic and extreme-case waveforms in healthy lungs and 4.6 Hz and 8.5 Hz during acute lung injury. Conclusions: In monkeys, the Ppl-Pes tissue barrier has a frequency response suitable for Ppl estimation during low- frequency mechanical ventilation, and Pes manometers should have a minimum uniform frequency response up to 8.5 Hz. However, the Ppl-Pes tissue barrier adversely affects the accurate estimation of dynamic Ppl at high frequencies, with varied airway pressure amplitudes and offsets, such as the Ppl encountered during high-frequency oscillatory ventilation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)550-558
Number of pages9
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2000


  • Lung elastance
  • Manometry
  • Respiratory mechanics


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