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Tracheal intubation in the emergency department: a comparison of GlideScope® video laryngoscopy to direct laryngoscopy in 822 intubations



Tracheal intubation in the emergency department: a comparison of GlideScope® video laryngoscopy to direct laryngoscopy in 822 intubations



Journal of Emergency Medicine 42(4): 400-405



Video laryngoscopy has, in recent years, become more available to emergency physicians. However, little research has been conducted to compare their success to conventional direct laryngoscopy. To compare the success rates of GlideScope(®) (Verathon Inc., Bothell, WA) videolaryngoscopy (GVL) with direct laryngoscopy (DL) for emergency department (ED) intubations. This was a 24-month retrospective observational study of all patients intubated in a single academic ED with a level I trauma center. Structured data forms were completed after each intubation and entered into a continuous quality improvement database. All patients intubated in the ED with either the GlideScope(®) standard, Cobalt, Ranger, or traditional Macintosh or Miller laryngoscopes were included. All patients intubated before arrival were excluded. Primary analysis evaluated overall and first-attempt success rates, operator experience level, performance characteristics of GVL, complications, and reasons for failure. There were 943 patients intubated during the study period; 120 were excluded due to alternative management strategies. DL was used in 583 (62%) patients, and GVL in 360 (38%). GVL had higher first-attempt success (75%, p = 0.03); DL had a higher success rate when more than one attempt was required (57%, p = 0.003). The devices had statistically equivalent overall success rates. GVL had fewer esophageal intubations (n = 1) than DL (n = 18); p = 0.005. The two techniques performed equivalently overall, however, GVL had a higher overall success rate, and lower number of esophageal complications. In the setting of ED intubations, GVL offers an excellent option to maximize first-attempt success for airway management.

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Accession: 056624948

Download citation: RISBibTeXText

PMID: 21689899

DOI: 10.1016/j.jemermed.2011.05.019


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