Acapella (Oscillating PEP)

Acapella is a small hand-held device that helps move mucus out of the lungs. Keeping mucus out of your child's lungs will:

  • Improve his or her health
  • Keep him or her from getting sick

Using acapella correctly is very important. It should be used with Huff Coughs during treatment.

Vibrations help to loosen and dislodge mucus. Significant positive pressure, or PEP, helps air to get around and behind trapped mucus. PEP also helps to “splint” the airways open. This allows the airflow to move the mucus up to the large airways where it can be huffed or coughed out.

Have your child:

  1. Sit up straight in a chair.
  2. Rest elbows on a table.
  3. Take slightly deeper breaths than normal for 1-2 minutes.
  4. Put the mouthpiece lightly in his or her mouth. Make sure there is a tight seal around the mouthpiece.
  5. Breathe in slowly, taking a larger than normal breath.
  6. Hold his or her breath for 2 to 3 seconds. 
  7. Breathe out through the device longer and a little faster than normal. 
  8. Repeat this 15 times. Keep the mouthpiece in for all 15 breaths. 
  9. Do 2 to 3 Huff Coughs. 
  10. Cough to get rid of mucus.

Repeat the entire process for 6 cycles or a maximum of 30 minutes.

After each use:

  • Open the acapella
  • Allow the acapella to air dry on a clean paper towel

Every day:

  • Disassemble and clean with liquid dish soap, followed with a sterile water rinse

Sterilize

  • The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation recommends disinfecting your acapella by using an alcohol bath for 5 minutes or placing on top rack of the dishwasher
  • Inspect your acapella to ensure proper function.

Last Updated 08/2012