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A ventilator is a machine that helps you breathe by moving air in and out of your lungs. This machine may also be called a breathing machine, respirator, or mechanical ventilator. The ventilator connects to a tube that is placed in your mouth or nose and is passed into your windpipe (trachea). Sometimes, an incision is made in the throat and the breathing tube is inserted directly into the windpipe (tracheostomy). The tube delivers warm, moist, oxygen-rich air to the lungs and carries away waste gases, such as carbon dioxide.
A ventilator can be used in the operating room, intensive care unit (ICU), rehabilitation unit, ambulance, and at home. It is sometimes called life support.
What hospitals are doing
People who end up developing an infection are usually treated with antibiotic medicines.
What you can do
This information is not intended to replace advice given to you by your health care provider. Make sure you discuss any questions you have with your health care provider.
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