Cricoid pressure impedes tracheal intubation with the Pentax-AWS Airwayscope: a prospective randomized trial†®: a prospective randomized trial†

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Abstract

Background

It is unclear how cricoid pressure affects tracheal intubation with the Pentax-AWS Airwayscope® (AWS). We conducted a prospective randomized clinical trial in anaesthetized patients.

Methods

Sixty patients were allocated to either the cricoid pressure (CP) group (n=30) or the sham group (n=30). We compared the two groups with regard to intubation time, number of attempts required for insertion of the Intlock blade (disposable blade of the AWS) and tracheal intubation, percentage of glottic opening (POGO) score, and subjective difficulty of both laryngoscopy and passage of a tube through the glottis.

Results

Intubation time was significantly longer in the CP group (median 45[IQR40–59] s) than in the sham group (32[28–45] s) (P=0.003, 95% CI for median difference 5–24 s). The number required for insertion of the Intlock blade did not differ between the groups (P=0.08), but the number for tracheal intubation was significantly higher in the CP group (1 attempt in 14 patients, 2 in 7, 3 in 9) than in the sham group (1 attempt in 24 patients, 2 in 6; P=0.002). POGO score did not differ significantly between the groups (P=0.60), nor did the subjective difficulty of laryngoscopy (P=0.06). The visual analogue scale score for passage of a tube through the glottis was significantly higher in the CP group than in the sham group (P<0.001).

Conclusions

Cricoid pressure impedes tracheal intubation using the AWS, and is associated with longer intubation time, which can be attributed to increased difficulty in the passage of a tube through the glottis.

Clinical Trial registry number

UMIN000018209.

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