Smiths Medical’s Drug-Free Acapella Choice Vibratory PEP Therapy System Shown To Reduce Hospital Length Of Stay By 1 1/2 Days For Patients With Acute Exacerbation Of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease

MINNEAPOLIS--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Smiths Medical, a leading global medical device manufacturer, announced today that a study1 presented at the American Thoracic Society International Conference shows the acapella® choice system can reduce hospital length of stay by one and a half days for patients with acute exacerbation of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).

“Our goal in developing the acapella® choice vibratory PEP therapy system was to improve patient outcomes”

COPD is a leading cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide and results in an economic and social burden that is both substantial and increasing.2 In the United States, the estimated direct costs of COPD are $29.5 billion, with indirect costs contributing an additional $20.4 billion.3

The study revealed patients who were treated with positive expiratory therapy (PEP) and oscillatory positive expiratory therapy (OPEP) experienced a one and a one half day reduction in hospital length of stay, versus patients who did not receive these therapies. During the study, PEP and OPEP therapy were maintained with the acapella® choice vibratory PEP therapy system, with the oscillatory mechanism modified for use as a PEP treatment.

OPEP therapy has been studied for over 20 years, establishing its effectiveness in clearing mucus secretions, increasing exercise tolerance, and improving health-related quality of life.4 Recent studies have demonstrated a 28% reduction in acute exacerbations in patients with COPD and chronic bronchitis.5

“Our goal in developing the acapella® choice vibratory PEP therapy system was to improve patient outcomes," said Ian Harper, Vice President Vital Care at Smiths Medical. "These findings are encouraging as they demonstrate the acapella® choice system improves outcomes while decreasing the burden on our healthcare resources.”

About the acapella® choice system study: The study aimed to demonstrate the impact of the acapella® choice vibratory PEP therapy system used as an adjunctive therapy in patients hospitalized for an acute exacerbation of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease. Patients with significant sputum production were prospectively enrolled in the study over a two year period. The PEP and OPEP therapies were administered three times daily with post use “huff coughs.” A historical matched control cohort of patients who were not treated with PEP or OPEP therapy was matched in a two to one manner by age, gender, and season of admission. The primary endpoint was hospital length of stay. The hospital LOS (± SD) was 5.1 ± 3.9 days for the treatment group (PEP and OPEP) and 6.6 ± 5.1 days for the retrospective control group, resulting in a 1.5 day reduction in hospital LOS (p=0.02).

About the acapella® choice system: The acapella® choice system combines the benefits of both PEP therapy and airway vibrations to mobilize secretions and can be used in any position for patients on the move. The device is drug-free although it allows proximal nebulizer placement to administer drugs when prescribed. It disassembles into four, easy to clean parts for convenience in the home or hospital.

About Smiths Medical

Smiths Medical is a leading supplier of specialized medical devices and equipment for global markets, focusing on the medication delivery, vital care and safety devices market segments. It is part of Smiths Group, a global leader in applying advanced technologies from markets in threat and contraband detection, energy, medical devices, communications and engineered components. Smiths Group employs around 23,000 people in more than 50 countries.

  1. Milan S, Bondalapati P, Bachman E, Weingarten JA. Use of a positive expiratory pressure device reduces hospital length of stay for acute exacerbation of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Proceedings of the American Thoracic Society International Conference; 2016 May 13-18; San Francisco, CA. Available from:
  2. Global Initiative For Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease, Global Strategy for the Diagnosis, Management, and Prevention of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, Updated 2016.
  3. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. Morbidity and mortality chartbook on cardiovascular, lung and blood diseases. Bethesda, Maryland: US Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, National Institutes of Health. Accessed at:; 2009.
  4. Svenningsen S, Paulin GA, Sheikh K, Guo F, Hasany A, Kirby M, Rezai RE, McCormack DG, Parraga G. Oscillatory Positive Expiratory Pressure in Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease. COPD. 2016;13(1):66-74. doi: 10.3109/15412555.2015.1043523. PubMed PMID: 26430763.
  5. Suggett J., ERS International Congress, September 3-7, 2016, London, UK

Smiths Medical
Evan Miller, 763-383-3296

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