Pneumon 2018, 31(4): 231-239, Review
Is High-frequency chest wall oscillation (HFCWO) effective in COPD patients?
Authors Information

1Physiotherapist BSc, MSc, Pancyprian Association of Cancer patients and Friends, Nicosia, Cyprus
2The Royal Wolverhampton NHS Trust, Wolverhampton, WV10 0QP, UK
3First Class Medical Officer Respiratory Diseases, Pulmonologist, Nicosia and Larnaca General Hospital, Cyprus


Background The incidence of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease is increasing every year, increasing the economic burden on the healthcare system. High frequency chest wall oscillation device is another airway clearance technique that according to several studies has a positive benefit in the respiratory symptoms experienced in cystic fibrosis and bronchiectasis patients. Methods Literature search in the Cochrane library, PubMed, Medline, PEDro SPORTDiscus, AMED, and CINAHL with the following keywords: physiotherapy, exercise, rehab, HFCWO, high frequency chest wall oscillation, positive pressure, COPD, Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Results Four studies met the inclusion criteria. Overall, the studies showed positive results for the use of HFCWO in COPD patients of varying stages and acuteness. Only one study reported adverse effects. Conclusions HFCWO could be potentially added to the treatment of patients with COPD, however future studies need to be done using HFCWO in patients with COPD.

Keywords: COPD, HFCWO