OBJECTIVES: We set out to compare emergency medicine residents' intubating times and success rates for direct laryngoscopy (DL), GlideScope-assisted intubation (GS), and the Supraglottic Airway Laryngopharyngeal Tube (SALT) airway with and without biohazard gear.
METHODS: Each resident passed through 2 sets of 3 testing stations (DL, GS, SALT) in succession, intubating Laerdal mannequin heads with the 3 modalities after randomization to start with or without biohazard gear.
RESULTS: Thirty-seven residents participated, and 27 were male (73%); 14 (37.8%) had prior experience intubating in biohazard suits. There was a statistically significant difference in those who had prior intubation experience between DL (37, 100%), GS (32, 86.5%), and SALT (12, 32.4%) (P < .001) and in median time to intubation (48 seconds, no suit; 57 seconds, with suits) (P = .03). There was no statistically significant difference between the overall times to intubate for the 3 devices. First-pass success was highest for DL (91.2%, no suit; 83.7%, suit) followed by GS (89%, no suit; 78.3%, suit) and SALT (51%, no suit; 67.6%, suit).
CONCLUSION: A minority of participants had prior experience intubating in biohazard suits. Use of biohazard suits extends time to successful intubation. There was no difference in time to intubation for the 3 devices, but first-pass success was highest for DL (with or without biohazard gear).
Weaver, K. R., Barr, G. J., Long, K. R., Diaz, L. J., Ratner, A. S., Reboul, J. P., & ... Kane, B. G. (2015). Comparison of airway intubation devices when using a biohazard suit: a feasibility study. The American Journal Of Emergency Medicine, doi:10.1016/j.ajem.2015.02.051