Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP)

CPAP or Continuous Positive Airway Pressure is a device now being carried by EMTs and Paramedics in Jackson County as we continue to raise our standard of care provided to our patients. CPAP is a device that is used to treat certain respiratory conditions such as congestive heart failure (CHF), acute pulmonary edema, asthma and chronic obstructed pulmonary disease (COPD). CPAP basically functions as it sounds, it provides a constant pressure that forces and keeps the lower airways in the lungs open so they function as they are intended. CPAP has been successfully used in the hospital setting for many years but until recently it was not practical for use in the pre-hospital setting due to size restrictions and cost. Most often, CPAP allows EMTs and Paramedics to appropriately treat these conditions without the use of endotracheal intubation which is safer for the patient and it carries a lessened potential for complications.