Airway clearance with expiratory flow accelerator technology: Effectiveness of the “free aspire” device in patients with severe copd

Giorgia Patrizio, Michele D’Andria, Francesco D’Abrosca, Antonella Cabiaglia, Fabio Tanzi, Giancarlo Garuti, Antonello Nicolini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


OBJECTIVES: Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is associated with a higher risk of pulmonary infections. This risk not only negatively affects patients’ quality of life but also increases social and health costs. Hence, there is a need for an effective rehabilitative treatment including airway clearance. The aim of this pilot study was to evaluate the efficacy of a new tool for bronchial clearance based on expiratory flow accelerator (EFA) technology compared with positive expiratory pressure (PEP) treatment. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Twenty stable patients with COPD, Global Initiative for Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease 3–4 stage, were enrolled and allocated to treatment with EFA or Bubble-PEP (BP) for 20 days during a pulmonary rehabilitation program. At baseline and the end of treatment, the following parameters were measured: Arterial blood gases (ABG); respiratory function, including peak cough expiratory flow (PCEF), maximal inspiratory pressure (MIP), and maximal expiratory pressure exercise capacity using the 6-minute walk test (6MWT), dyspnea using the Medical Research Council scale, and quality of life using the St. George’s Respiratory Questionnaire. RESULTS: Expiratory flow accelerator showed a significant pre- and post-improvement in ABG and a significantly greater improvement than BP in PCEF, MIP, and 6MWT post-treatment. CONCLUSION: Expiratory flow accelerator is a valid device compared with BP as an adjunctive therapy for the treatment of patients with severe COPD.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)209-215
Number of pages7
JournalTurkish Thoracic Journal
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • Chest physiotherapy
  • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
  • Expiratory flow accelerator technology
  • Positive expiratory pressure

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine


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