The Open Respiratory Medicine Journal




ISSN: 1874-3064 ― Volume 13, 2019
CASE REPORT

Is it Time to Replace Direct Laryngoscopy with Video Laryngoscopy in Airway Management in Training Facilities?



Salim Surani1, *, Joseph Varon2, 3, 4
1 Texas A&M University, Corpus Christi, Texas, USA
2 Professor of Acute and Continuing Care The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston, Houston, TX-7703030, USA
3 The University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston, Galveston, TX-77555, USA
4 United Memorial Medical Center/United General Hospital Houston, Texas, USA


Article Information


Identifiers and Pagination:

Year: 2019
Volume: 13
First Page: 48
Last Page: 50
Publisher Id: TORMJ-13-48
DOI: 10.2174/1874306401913010048

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Electronic publication date: 30/09/2019
Collection year: 2019

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© 2019 Surani and Varon.

open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0), a copy of which is available at: (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/legalcode). This license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.


* Address correspondence to this author at the Texas A&M University, Corpus Christi, Texas, USA; E-mail: srsurani@hotmail.com





Endotracheal Intubation (EI) remains an essential procedure to protect the airway and maintain means for oxygenation and ventilation in acutely ill patients as well as those undergoing general anesthesia during surgical procedures [1Kim SY, Park SO, Kim JW, et al. How much experience do rescuers require to achieve successful tracheal intubation during cardiopulmonary resuscitation? Resuscitation 2018; 133: 187-92.
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.resuscitation.2018.08.032] [PMID: 3017 2693]
-3Link MS, Berkow LC, Kudenchuk PJ, et al. Part 7: Adult Advanced Cardiovascular Life Support: 2015 American Heart Association Guidelines Update for Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation and Emergency Cardiovascular Care. Circulation 2015; 132(18)(Suppl. 2): S444-64.
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1161/CIR.0000000000000261] [PMID: 2647 2995]
]. Outside the operation room, it carries significant hazard, as it is fre-quently performed by inexperienced healthcare providers and often physicians-in-training [4Baek MS, Han M, Huh JW, Lim CM, Koh Y, Hong SB. Video laryngoscopy versus direct laryngoscopy for first-attempt tracheal intubation in the general ward. Ann Intensive Care 2018; 8(1): 83.
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s13613-018-0428-0] [PMID: 3010 5607]
-6Griesdale DE, Bosma TL, Kurth T, Isac G, Chittock DR. Complications of endotracheal intubation in the critically ill. Intensive Care Med 2008; 34(10): 1835-42.
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00134-008-1205-6] [PMID: 1860 4519]
]. In some institutions, midlevel providers and respiratory therapists also manage the airway in emergency circumstances. This has led to a significant risk of complications when airway management is performed outside the confines of the operating room.

For decades, clinicians have used Direct Laryngoscopy (DL) to manage the airway using Miller (straight) or Mcintosh (curved) blades [7Scott J, Baker PA. How did the Macintosh laryngoscope become so popular? Paediatr Anaesth 2009; 19(Suppl. 1): 24-9.
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1460-9592.2009.03026.x] [PMID: 1957 2841]
]. Unfortunately, with conventional laryngoscopes utilizing either one of these blades, visualization of airway structures may be challenging and intubation may be delayed. The consequences of failed intubation may be deadly, For example, the time it takes to stop in chest compression during cardio-pulmonary resuscitation while trying to intubate the patients prevents forward flow, especially in an era of paradigm shift (i.e., high-quality compression with minimal intervention in compression has been emphasized) [8Sakles JC, Chiu S, Mosier J, Walker C, Stolz U. The importance of first pass success when performing orotracheal intubation in the emergency department. Acad Emerg Med 2013; 20(1): 71-8.
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/acem.12055] [PMID: 2357 4475]
, 9Mosier J, Chiu S, Patanwala AE, Sakles JC. A comparison of the GlideScope video laryngoscope to the C-MAC video laryngoscope for intubation in the emergency department. Annals of emergency medicine 2013; 61(4): 414-20 e1.
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.annemergmed.2012.11.001]
]. In addition, failed intubation leads to significant decreases in oxygen saturation and inadvertent esophageal intubation can be devastating and have catastrophic consequences.

The major challenges with DL are the inability of the trainer to visualize the process in real time to guide the trainee, resulting in a higher rate of failed first intubation, esophageal intubation and complications [4Baek MS, Han M, Huh JW, Lim CM, Koh Y, Hong SB. Video laryngoscopy versus direct laryngoscopy for first-attempt tracheal intubation in the general ward. Ann Intensive Care 2018; 8(1): 83.
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s13613-018-0428-0] [PMID: 3010 5607]
, 10Smith CM, Yeung J. Airway management in cardiac arrest-Not a question of choice but of quality? Resuscitation 2018; 133: A5-6.
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.resuscitation.2018.10.009] [PMID: 3033 6234]
, 11Buis ML, Maissan IM, Hoeks SE, Klimek M, Stolker RJ. Defining the learning curve for endotracheal intubation using direct laryngoscopy: A systematic review. Resuscitation 2016; 99: 63-71.
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.resuscitation.2015.11.005] [PMID: 2671 1127]
]. In recent years, Video Laryngoscopy (VL) for airway management has become popular. Several studies have supported its use for physician-in-training education [4Baek MS, Han M, Huh JW, Lim CM, Koh Y, Hong SB. Video laryngoscopy versus direct laryngoscopy for first-attempt tracheal intubation in the general ward. Ann Intensive Care 2018; 8(1): 83.
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s13613-018-0428-0] [PMID: 3010 5607]
, 7Scott J, Baker PA. How did the Macintosh laryngoscope become so popular? Paediatr Anaesth 2009; 19(Suppl. 1): 24-9.
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1460-9592.2009.03026.x] [PMID: 1957 2841]
, 8Sakles JC, Chiu S, Mosier J, Walker C, Stolz U. The importance of first pass success when performing orotracheal intubation in the emergency department. Acad Emerg Med 2013; 20(1): 71-8.
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/acem.12055] [PMID: 2357 4475]
, 10Smith CM, Yeung J. Airway management in cardiac arrest-Not a question of choice but of quality? Resuscitation 2018; 133: A5-6.
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.resuscitation.2018.10.009] [PMID: 3033 6234]
].

The main questions that arise, as video laryngoscopes are becoming more available such as if they increase the success of first attempt at intubation, better glottis visualization, esophageal intubation prevention, availability in medical floors and in ambulances, does it decrease the degree of desaturation, dysrrhythmias? In addition, issues such as cost, operator experience and lack of training to intubate with DL rather than VL need to be considered.

As difficult airways and inexperienced operators remain common, Buis and colleague in a systematic review analyzed success rate and complications of airway management using DL [11Buis ML, Maissan IM, Hoeks SE, Klimek M, Stolker RJ. Defining the learning curve for endotracheal intubation using direct laryngoscopy: A systematic review. Resuscitation 2016; 99: 63-71.
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.resuscitation.2015.11.005] [PMID: 2671 1127]
]. These investigators found that the incidence of difficult airway in the emergent situations to be 20 times higher when compared to the elective setting. They also noted that trainees should perform more than 50 EI to be qualified to perform such therapeutic intervention independently. How can this be compared to VL? Okamoto and co-workers compared the VL with DL for EI in the Emergency Department (ED) [11Buis ML, Maissan IM, Hoeks SE, Klimek M, Stolker RJ. Defining the learning curve for endotracheal intubation using direct laryngoscopy: A systematic review. Resuscitation 2016; 99: 63-71.
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.resuscitation.2015.11.005] [PMID: 2671 1127]
]. This study analyzed 9694 EI in the ED and found that the first attempt success rate was higher in VL group when compared to DL group (78% vs. 70%: p-value <0.001). In addition, the VL group had a lower rate of esophageal intubations and a higher rate of initial Glottis visualization (p-value 0.01) [12Okamoto H, Goto T, Wong ZSY, Hagiwara Y, Watase H, Hasegawa K. Comparison of video laryngoscopy versus direct laryngoscopy for intubation in emergency department patients with cardiac arrest: A multicentre study. Resuscitation 2019; 136: 70-7.
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.resuscitation.2018.10.005] [PMID: 3038 5385]
].

Others have found conflictive results, For example, Jiang and coworkers suggest that VL, when compared with DL, does not improve EI in the emergency and critical patients [13Jiang J, Ma D, Li B, Yue Y, Xue F. Video laryngoscopy does not improve the intubation outcomes in emergency and critical patients - a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. Crit Care 2017; 21(1): 288.
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s13054-017-1885-9] [PMID: 29178953]
]. The investigators analyzed systematically 12 studies including 2583 patients and found that prehospital intubation success rate was worse when “experienced operators” used the VL [13Jiang J, Ma D, Li B, Yue Y, Xue F. Video laryngoscopy does not improve the intubation outcomes in emergency and critical patients - a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. Crit Care 2017; 21(1): 288.
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s13054-017-1885-9] [PMID: 29178953]
].

Table 1
Advantages of direct laryngoscope vs. video laryngoscope.


Interestingly, Baek and colleagues found that success rate for EI on first attempt was higher with VL when compared to DL, but VL did not decrease the EI-related complications [4Baek MS, Han M, Huh JW, Lim CM, Koh Y, Hong SB. Video laryngoscopy versus direct laryngoscopy for first-attempt tracheal intubation in the general ward. Ann Intensive Care 2018; 8(1): 83.
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s13613-018-0428-0] [PMID: 3010 5607]
]. A Cochrane database analysis suggested a decrease in the failed intubation with VL, especially among the patients with difficult airways [14Lewis SR, Butler AR, Parker J, Cook TM, Smith AF. Videolaryngoscopy versus direct laryngoscopy for adult patients requiring tracheal intubation. Cochrane Database Syst Rev 2016; 11
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/14651858.CD011136.pub2] [PMID: 27844477]
]. In this analysis, the authors suggest that currently, there is not enough evidence to prove that VL reduces the number of intubation attempts, time required for EI, or the hypoxemia and other respiratory-related complications.

Similarly, the data is unclear as to whether VL assists the experienced operator. It is clear that VL improves the glottic visualization, but the question remains if better visualization translates to improved first attempt EI? Some studies have also shown lower attempt rates and complications with VL when compared with DL [15Hwang SY, Lee SU, Lee TR, et al. Usefulness of C-MAC video laryngoscope in direct laryngoscopy training in the emergency department: A propensity score matching analysis. PLoS One 2018; 13(12)e0208077
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0208077] [PMID: 30540813]
]. Hwang and collaborators, studied the benefits of a commercially available VL (C-MAC) as a training tool for trainees. They found that overall unadjusted odds ratio for the first pass was (CI 1.28-3.22, p <0.01), multiple attempts were (CI 0.15-0.93, p=0.03), first EI success rate was 69% (79% in C-MAC VL versus 65% in the DL group), and multiple attempts at EI being 4% in the C-MAC VL group and 9% in the DL group. The overall complication rate was 4% in the C-MAC VL group versus 14% in the DL group (CI 0.13-0.63; p<0.01). These result suggest that C-MAC VL can be used as an effective tool for improving the success rate for the EI among trainees (Table 1) [15Hwang SY, Lee SU, Lee TR, et al. Usefulness of C-MAC video laryngoscope in direct laryngoscopy training in the emergency department: A propensity score matching analysis. PLoS One 2018; 13(12)e0208077
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0208077] [PMID: 30540813]
].

In the authors’ experience, VL aid’s significantly in successful first EI attempts among trainees. However, the readers must be cautioned that, as in any other electronic devices, a variety of problems may occur when using VL. For example, battery and light source issues are frequently noted. Another concern would be to just provide training to use VL. When the trainee is confronted with DL, he/she may have difficulties getting successful EI. However, based on currently available, experience, and common logic, the authors raise the question for regulatory agencies to consider improving the training process by utilizing VL/C-MAC VL or similar equipment for the first 25 EI before proceeding with the EI via the DL. We would also suggest to evaluate this methodology of using only VL or similar equipment for the initial training phase so live guidance and feedback can be provided to the trainee.

REFERENCES

[1] Kim SY, Park SO, Kim JW, et al. How much experience do rescuers require to achieve successful tracheal intubation during cardiopulmonary resuscitation? Resuscitation 2018; 133: 187-92.
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.resuscitation.2018.08.032] [PMID: 3017 2693]
[2] Soar J, Nolan JP, Böttiger BW, et al. European Resuscitation Council Guidelines for Resuscitation 2015: Section 3. Adult advanced life support. Resuscitation 2015; 95: 100-47.
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.resuscitation.2015.07.016] [PMID: 2647 7701]
[3] Link MS, Berkow LC, Kudenchuk PJ, et al. Part 7: Adult Advanced Cardiovascular Life Support: 2015 American Heart Association Guidelines Update for Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation and Emergency Cardiovascular Care. Circulation 2015; 132(18)(Suppl. 2): S444-64.
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1161/CIR.0000000000000261] [PMID: 2647 2995]
[4] Baek MS, Han M, Huh JW, Lim CM, Koh Y, Hong SB. Video laryngoscopy versus direct laryngoscopy for first-attempt tracheal intubation in the general ward. Ann Intensive Care 2018; 8(1): 83.
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s13613-018-0428-0] [PMID: 3010 5607]
[5] Simpson GD, Ross MJ, McKeown DW, Ray DC. Tracheal intubation in the critically ill: a multi-centre national study of practice and complications. Br J Anaesth 2012; 108(5): 792-9.
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/bja/aer504] [PMID: 2231 5326]
[6] Griesdale DE, Bosma TL, Kurth T, Isac G, Chittock DR. Complications of endotracheal intubation in the critically ill. Intensive Care Med 2008; 34(10): 1835-42.
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00134-008-1205-6] [PMID: 1860 4519]
[7] Scott J, Baker PA. How did the Macintosh laryngoscope become so popular? Paediatr Anaesth 2009; 19(Suppl. 1): 24-9.
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1460-9592.2009.03026.x] [PMID: 1957 2841]
[8] Sakles JC, Chiu S, Mosier J, Walker C, Stolz U. The importance of first pass success when performing orotracheal intubation in the emergency department. Acad Emerg Med 2013; 20(1): 71-8.
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/acem.12055] [PMID: 2357 4475]
[9] Mosier J, Chiu S, Patanwala AE, Sakles JC. A comparison of the GlideScope video laryngoscope to the C-MAC video laryngoscope for intubation in the emergency department. Annals of emergency medicine 2013; 61(4): 414-20 e1.
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.annemergmed.2012.11.001]
[10] Smith CM, Yeung J. Airway management in cardiac arrest-Not a question of choice but of quality? Resuscitation 2018; 133: A5-6.
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.resuscitation.2018.10.009] [PMID: 3033 6234]
[11] Buis ML, Maissan IM, Hoeks SE, Klimek M, Stolker RJ. Defining the learning curve for endotracheal intubation using direct laryngoscopy: A systematic review. Resuscitation 2016; 99: 63-71.
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.resuscitation.2015.11.005] [PMID: 2671 1127]
[12] Okamoto H, Goto T, Wong ZSY, Hagiwara Y, Watase H, Hasegawa K. Comparison of video laryngoscopy versus direct laryngoscopy for intubation in emergency department patients with cardiac arrest: A multicentre study. Resuscitation 2019; 136: 70-7.
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.resuscitation.2018.10.005] [PMID: 3038 5385]
[13] Jiang J, Ma D, Li B, Yue Y, Xue F. Video laryngoscopy does not improve the intubation outcomes in emergency and critical patients - a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. Crit Care 2017; 21(1): 288.
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s13054-017-1885-9] [PMID: 29178953]
[14] Lewis SR, Butler AR, Parker J, Cook TM, Smith AF. Videolaryngoscopy versus direct laryngoscopy for adult patients requiring tracheal intubation. Cochrane Database Syst Rev 2016; 11
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/14651858.CD011136.pub2] [PMID: 27844477]
[15] Hwang SY, Lee SU, Lee TR, et al. Usefulness of C-MAC video laryngoscope in direct laryngoscopy training in the emergency department: A propensity score matching analysis. PLoS One 2018; 13(12)e0208077
[http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0208077] [PMID: 30540813]

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