• The Airtraq as a rescue airway device following failed direct laryngoscopy: a case series.

      Maharaj, C H; Costello, J F; McDonnell, J G; Harte, B H; Laffey, J G; Department of Anaesthesia, Clinical Sciences Institute, National Centre for Biomedical Engineering Sciences, National University of Ireland, Galway, Ireland. (2007-06)
      We report the successful use of the Airtraq as a rescue device following failed direct laryngoscopy, in patients deemed at increased risk for difficult tracheal intubation. In a series of seven patients, repeated attempts at direct laryngoscopy with the Macintosh blade, and the use of manoeuvres to aid intubation, such as the gum elastic bougie placement, were unsuccessful. In contrast, with the Airtraq device, each patient's trachea was successfully intubated on the first attempt. This report underlines the utility of the Airtraq device in these patients.
    • A comparison of direct and indirect laryngoscopes and the ILMA in novice users: a manikin study.

      Maharaj, C H; McDonnell, J G; Harte, B H; Laffey, J G; Department of Anaesthesia, Galway University Hospitals, Galway, Ireland. (2007-11)
      Direct laryngoscopic tracheal intubation using the Macintosh laryngoscope is taught to many healthcare professionals as it is a potentially life-saving procedure. However, it is a difficult skill to acquire and maintain. Several alternative intubation devices exist that may provide a better view of the glottis and require less skill to use. We conducted a prospective, randomised trial of four different laryngoscopes and the ILMA in 30 medical students who had no prior airway management experience. The devices were tested in both normal and cervical immobilisation laryngoscopy scenarios. Following brief didactic instruction, each participant took turns performing laryngoscopy and intubation using each device under direct supervision. Each student was allowed up to three intubation attempts with each device, in each scenario. The Airtraq, McCoy, and the ILMA each demonstrated advantages over the Macintosh laryngoscope. In both the easy and difficult airway scenarios, the Airtraq, McCoy, and the ILMA reduced the number of intubation attempts, and reduced the number of optimisation manoeuvres required. The Airtraq and ILMA reduced the severity of dental trauma in both scenarios. The performance of the other devices studied was more variable. Overall, participants found that only the Airtraq was less difficult to use and they were more confident using it compared to the Macinosh laryngoscope.
    • Comparison of Macintosh, Truview EVO2, Glidescope, and Airwayscope laryngoscope use in patients with cervical spine immobilization.

      Malik, M A; Maharaj, C H; Harte, B H; Laffey, J G; Department of Anaesthesia, Clinical Sciences Institute, Galway University Hospitals, Galway, Ireland. (2008-11)
      The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of the Pentax AWS, Glidescope, and the Truview EVO2, in comparison with the Macintosh laryngoscope, when performing tracheal intubation in patients with neck immobilization using manual in-line axial cervical spine stabilization.
    • Comparison of three cuffed emergency percutaneous cricothyroidotomy devices to conventional surgical cricothyroidotomy in a porcine model.

      Murphy, C; Rooney, S J; Maharaj, C H; Laffey, J G; Harte, B H; Department of Anaesthesia, Galway University Hospitals, Galway, Ireland. (2011-01)
      Emergency cricothyroidotomy is a potentially life-saving procedure in the 'cannot intubate cannot ventilate (CICV)' scenario. Although surgical cricothyroidotomy remains the technique recommended in many 'CICV' algorithms, the insertion of a tracheostomy as a cannula over a trocar, or using the Seldinger method, may have advantages as they are more familiar to the anaesthetist. We compared the utility of three cuffed cricothyroidotomy devices: cuffed Melker®, Quicktrach 2®, and PCK® devices, with surgical cricothyroidotomy.
    • A comparison of tracheal intubation using the Airtraq or the Macintosh laryngoscope in routine airway management: A randomised, controlled clinical trial.

      Maharaj, C H; O'Croinin, D; Curley, G; Harte, B H; Laffey, J G; Department of Anaesthesia, University College Hospital, Galway, Ireland. (2006-11)
      The Airtraq laryngoscope is a novel single use tracheal intubation device. We compared the Airtraq with the Macintosh laryngoscope in patients deemed at low risk for difficult intubation in a randomised, controlled clinical trial. Sixty consenting patients presenting for surgery requiring tracheal intubation were randomly allocated to undergo intubation using a Macintosh (n = 30) or Airtraq (n = 30) laryngoscope. All patients were intubated by one of four anaesthetists experienced in the use of both laryngoscopes. No significant differences in demographic or airway variables were observed between the groups. All but one patient, in the Macintosh group, was successfully intubated on the first attempt. There was no difference between groups in the duration of intubation attempts. In comparison to the Macintosh laryngoscope, the Airtraq resulted in modest improvements in the intubation difficulty score, and in ease of use. Tracheal intubation with the Airtraq resulted in less alterations in heart rate. These findings demonstrate the utility of the Airtraq laryngoscope for tracheal intubation in low risk patients.
    • Evaluation of intubation using the Airtraq or Macintosh laryngoscope by anaesthetists in easy and simulated difficult laryngoscopy--a manikin study.

      Maharaj, C H; Higgins, B D; Harte, B H; Laffey, J G; Department of Anaesthesia, University College Hospital Galway, Ireland. (2006-05)
      The Airtraq Laryngoscope is a novel intubation device which allows visualisation of the vocal cords without alignment of the oral, pharyngeal and tracheal axes. We compared the Airtraq with the Macintosh laryngoscope in simulated easy and difficult laryngoscopy. Twenty-five anaesthetists were allowed up to three attempts to intubate the trachea in each of three laryngoscopy scenarios using a Laerdal Intubation Trainer followed by five scenarios using a Laerdal SimMan Manikin. Each anaesthetist then performed tracheal intubation of the normal airway a second time to characterise the learning curve. In the simulated easy laryngoscopy scenarios, there was no difference between the Airtraq and the Macintosh in success of tracheal intubation. The time taken to intubate at the end of the protocol was significantly lower using the Airtraq (9.5 (6.7) vs. 14.2 (7.4) s), demonstrating a rapid acquisition of skills. In the simulated difficult laryngoscopy scenarios, the Airtraq was more successful in achieving tracheal intubation, required less time to intubate successfully, caused less dental trauma, and was considered by the anaesthetists to be easier to use.
    • Evaluation of the Airtraq and Macintosh laryngoscopes in patients at increased risk for difficult tracheal intubation.

      Maharaj, C H; Costello, J F; Harte, B H; Laffey, J G; Department of Anaesthesia and Intensive Care Medicine, Galway University Hospitals, Galway, Ireland. (2008-02)
      The Airtraq, a novel single use indirect laryngoscope, has demonstrated promise in the normal and simulated difficult airway. We compared the ease of intubation using the Airtraq with the Macintosh laryngoscope, in patients at increased risk for difficult tracheal intubation, in a randomised, controlled clinical trial. Forty consenting patients presenting for surgery requiring tracheal intubation, who were deemed to possess at least three characteristics indicating an increased risk for difficulty in tracheal intubation, were randomly assigned to undergo tracheal intubation using a Macintosh (n = 20) or Airtraq (n = 20) laryngoscope. All patients were intubated by one of three anaesthetists experienced in the use of both laryngoscopes. Four patients were not successfully intubated with the Macintosh laryngoscope, but were intubated successfully with the Airtraq. The Airtraq reduced the duration of intubation attempts (mean (SD); 13.4 (6.3) vs 47.7 (8.5) s), the need for additional manoeuvres, and the intubation difficulty score (0.4 (0.8) vs 7.7 (3.0)). Tracheal intubation with the Airtraq also reduced the degree of haemodynamic stimulation and minor trauma compared to the Macintosh laryngoscope.
    • Learning and performance of tracheal intubation by novice personnel: a comparison of the Airtraq and Macintosh laryngoscope.

      Maharaj, C H; Costello, J F; Higgins, B D; Harte, B H; Laffey, J G; Department of Anaesthesia, University College Hospital Galway, Ireland. (2006-07)
      Direct laryngoscopic tracheal intubation is taught to many healthcare professionals as it is a potentially lifesaving procedure. However, it is a difficult skill to acquire and maintain, and, of concern, the consequences of poorly performed intubation attempts are potentially serious. The Airtraq Laryngoscope is a novel intubation device which may possess advantages over conventional direct laryngoscopes for use by novice personnel. We conducted a prospective trial with 40 medical students who had no prior airway management experience. Following brief didactic instruction, each participant took turns in performing laryngoscopy and intubation using the Macintosh and Airtraq devices under direct supervision. Each student was allowed up to three attempts to intubate in three laryngoscopy scenarios using a Laerdal Intubation Trainer and one scenario in a Laerdal SimMan Manikin. They then performed tracheal intubation of the normal airway a second time to characterise the learning curve for each device. The Airtraq provided superior intubating conditions, resulting in greater success of intubation, particularly in the difficult laryngoscopy scenarios. In both easy and simulated difficult laryngoscopy scenarios, the Airtraq decreased the duration of intubation attempts, reduced the number of optimisation manoeuvres required, and reduced the potential for dental trauma. The Airtraq device showed a rapid learning curve and the students found it significantly easier to use. The Airtraq appears to be a superior device for novice personnel to acquire the skills of tracheal intubation.
    • Randomized controlled trial of the Pentax AWS, Glidescope, and Macintosh laryngoscopes in predicted difficult intubation.

      Malik, M A; Subramaniam, R; Maharaj, C H; Harte, B H; Laffey, J G; Department of Anaesthesia and Intensive Care Medicine, Galway University Hospitals, Galway, Ireland. (2009-11)
      The purpose of this study was to determine the potential for the Pentax AWS and the Glidescope to reduce the difficulty of tracheal intubation in patients at increased risk for difficult tracheal intubation, in a randomized, controlled clinical trial.
    • Retention of tracheal intubation skills by novice personnel: a comparison of the Airtraq and Macintosh laryngoscopes.

      Maharaj, C H; Costello, J; Higgins, B D; Harte, B H; Laffey, J G; Department of Anaesthesia, Galway University Hospitals, Ireland. (2007-03)
      Direct laryngoscopic tracheal intubation is a potentially lifesaving manoeuvre, but it is a difficult skill to acquire and to maintain. These difficulties are exacerbated if the opportunities to utilise this skill are infrequent, and by the fact that the consequences of poorly performed intubation attempts may be severe. Novice users find the Airtraq laryngoscope easier to use than the conventional Macintosh laryngoscope. We therefore wished to determine whether novice users would have greater retention of intubation skills with the Airtraq rather than the Macintosh laryngoscope. Twenty medical students who had no prior airway management experience participated in this study. Following brief didactic instruction, each took turns performing laryngoscopy and intubation using the Macintosh and Airtraq devices in easy and simulated difficult laryngoscopy scenarios. The degree of success with each device, the time taken to perform intubation and the assistance required, and the potential for complications were then assessed. Six months later, the assessment process was repeated. No didactic instruction or practice attempts were provided on this latter occasion. Tracheal intubation skills declined markedly with both devices. However, the Airtraq continued to provide better intubating conditions, resulting in greater success of intubation, with fewer optimisation manoeuvres required, and reduced potential for dental trauma, particularly in the difficult laryngoscopy scenarios. The substantial decline in direct laryngoscopy skills over time emphasise the need for continued reinforcement of this complex skill.
    • Tracheal intubation in patients with cervical spine immobilization: a comparison of the Airwayscope, LMA CTrach, and the Macintosh laryngoscopes.

      Malik, M A; Subramaniam, R; Churasia, S; Maharaj, C H; Harte, B H; Laffey, J G; Department of Anaesthesia, Galway University Hospitals, Galway, Ireland. (2009-05)
      The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of the Pentax AWS, and the LMA CTrach, in comparison with the Macintosh laryngoscope, when performing tracheal intubation in patients with neck immobilization using manual in-line axial cervical spine stabilization.