In-Office Endoscopic Laryngeal Laser Procedures: A Patient Safety Initiative

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Abstract

Objective

To review complications of in-office endoscopic laryngeal laser procedures after implementation of standardized safety protocol.

Methods

A retrospective review was conducted of the first 2 years of in-office laser procedures at St Michaels Hospital after the introduction of a standardized safety protocol. The protocol included patient screening, procedure checklist with standardized reporting of processes, medications, and complications. Primary outcomes measured were complication rates of in-office laryngeal laser procedures. Secondary outcomes included hemodynamic changes, local anesthetic dose, laser settings, total laser/procedure time, and incidence of sedation.

Results

A total of 145 in-office KTP procedures performed on 65 patients were reviewed. In 98% of cases, the safety protocol was fully implemented. The overall complication rate was 4.8%. No major complications were encountered. Minor complications included vasovagal episodes and patient intolerance. The rate of patient intolerance resulting early termination of anticipated procedure was 13.1%. Total local anesthetic dose averaged 172.9 mg lidocaine per procedure. The mean amount of laser energy dispersed was 261.2 J, with mean total procedure time of 48.3 minutes. Sixteen percent of patients had preprocedure sedation. Vital signs were found to vary modestly. Systolic blood pressure was lower postprocedure in 13.8% and symptomatic in 4.1%.

Discussion

The review of our standardized safety protocol has revealed that in-office laser treatment for laryngeal pathology has extremely low complication rates with safe patient outcomes.

Implications for Practice

The trend of shifting procedures out of the operating room into the office/clinic setting requires new processes designed to promote patient safety.

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