An international survey about rapid sequence intubation of 10,003 anaesthetists and 16 airway experts

Zdravkovic, M.; Berger-Estilita, J.; Sorbello, M.; Hagberg, C. A. (2020). An international survey about rapid sequence intubation of 10,003 anaesthetists and 16 airway experts. Anaesthesia, 75(3), pp. 313-322. Wiley-Blackwell 10.1111/anae.14867

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Pulmonary aspiration of gastric content is a significant cause of anaesthesia-related morbidity and mortality. High-quality prospective randomised evidence to support prevention strategies, such as rapid sequence intubation, is difficult to generate due to well-described practical, ethical and methodological barriers. We aimed to generate an understanding of worldwide practice through surveying clinically practicing anaesthetists and airway experts. Our survey was designed to assess the influence of: departmental standards; patient factors; socio-economic factors; training; and supervision. We surveyed 10,003 anaesthetists who responded to an invitation to participate on LinkedIn. We then surveyed 16 international airway experts on the same content. When asked about a hypothetical patient with intestinal obstruction, respondents expressed preferences for [OR (95%CI)]: the head-up or -down position 4.26 (3.98-4.55), p < 0.001; nasogastric tube insertion 29.5 (26.9-32.3), p < 0.001; and the use of cricoid force 2.80 (2.62-3.00), p < 0.001, as compared with a hypothetical patient without intestinal obstruction also requiring rapid sequence intubation. Respondents from lower income countries were more likely to prefer [OR (95%CI]: the supine position 2.33 (2.00-2.63), p < 0.001; nasogastric tube insertion 1.29 (1.09-1.51), p = 0.002; and cricoid force application 2.54 (2.09-3.09), p < 0.001 as compared with respondents from higher income countries for a hypothetical patient with intestinal obstruction. This survey, which we believe is the largest of its kind, demonstrates that preferences for positioning, nasogastric tube use and cricoid force application during rapid sequence intubation vary substantially. Achieving agreed consensus may yield better training in the principles of rapid sequence intubation.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


04 Faculty of Medicine > Department of Intensive Care, Emergency Medicine and Anaesthesiology (DINA) > Clinic and Policlinic for Anaesthesiology and Pain Therapy

UniBE Contributor:

Berger-Estilita, Joana


600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health








Jeannie Wurz

Date Deposited:

04 Nov 2019 15:43

Last Modified:

07 Feb 2020 01:31

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