Prehospital endotracheal intubation; need for routine cuff pressure measurement?
until further notice
SourceEmergency Medicine Journal, 30, 10, (2013), pp. 851-853
Article / Letter to editor
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Emergency Medicine Journal
SubjectDCN NN - Brain networks and neuronal communication NCEBP 7: Effective primary care and public health; NCEBP 2: Evaluation of complex medical interventions
In endotracheal intubation, a secured airway includes an insufflated cuff distal to the vocal cords. High cuff pressures may lead to major complications occurring after a short period of time. Cuff pressures are not routinely checked after intubation in the prehospital setting, dealing with a vulnerable group of patients. We reviewed cuff pressures after intubation by Helicopter Emergency Medical Services and paramedics noted in a dispatch database. Initial cuff pressures are almost all too high, needing adjustment to be in the safe zone. Dutch paramedics lack manometers and, therefore, only few paramedic intubations are followed by cuff pressure measurements. We recommend cuff pressure measurements after all (prehospital) intubations and, therefore, all ambulances need to be equipped with cuff manometers.
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