• Comparison of the Glidescope and Pentax AWS laryngoscopes to the Macintosh laryngoscope for use by advanced paramedics in easy and simulated difficult intubation.

      Nasim, Sajid; Maharaj, Chrisen H; Malik, Muhammad A; O' Donnell, John; Higgins, Brendan D; Laffey, John G; Department of Anaesthesia, Galway University Hospitals, Galway, Ireland. dr_snasim@yahoo.com (2009)
      BACKGROUND: Intubation of the trachea in the pre-hospital setting may be lifesaving in severely ill and injured patients. However, tracheal intubation is frequently difficult to perform in this challenging environment, is associated with a lower success rate, and failed tracheal intubation constitutes an important cause of morbidity. Novel indirect laryngoscopes, such as the Glidescope and the AWS laryngoscopes may reduce this risk. METHODS: We compared the efficacy of these devices to the Macintosh laryngoscope when used by 25 Advanced Paramedics proficient in direct laryngoscopy, in a randomized, controlled, manikin study. Following brief didactic instruction with the Glidescope and the AWS laryngoscopes, each participant took turns performing laryngoscopy and intubation with each device, in an easy intubation scenario and following placement of a hard cervical collar, in a SimMan manikin. RESULTS: Both the Glidescope and the AWS performed better than the Macintosh, and demonstrate considerable promise in this context. The AWS had the least number of dental compressions in all three scenarios, and in the cervical spine immobilization scenario it required fewer maneuvers to optimize the view of the glottis. CONCLUSION: The Glidescope and AWS devices possess advantages over the conventional Macintosh laryngoscope when used by Advanced Paramedics in normal and simulated difficult intubation scenarios in this manikin study. Further studies are required to extend these findings to the clinical setting.
    • Effects and mechanisms of action of sildenafil citrate in human chorionic arteries.

      Maharaj, Chrisen H; O'Toole, Daniel; Lynch, Tadhg; Carney, John; Jarman, James; Higgins, Brendan D; Morrison, John J; Laffey, John G; Department of Anaesthesia, University College Hospital, Galway, Ireland. chrisenm@gmail.com (2009)
      OBJECTIVES: Sildenafil citrate, a specific phosphodiesterase-5 inhibitor, is increasingly used for pulmonary hypertension in pregnancy. Sildenafil is also emerging as a potential candidate for the treatment of intra-uterine growth retardation and for premature labor. Its effects in the feto-placental circulation are not known. Our objectives were to determine whether phosphodiesterase-5 is present in the human feto-placental circulation, and to characterize the effects and mechanisms of action of sildenafil citrate in this circulation. STUDY DESIGN: Ex vivo human chorionic plate arterial rings were used in all experiments. The presence of phosphodiesterase-5 in the feto-placental circulation was determined by western blotting and immunohistochemical staining. In a subsequent series of pharmacologic studies, the effects of sildenafil citrate in pre-constricted chorionic plate arterial rings were determined. Additional studies examined the role of cGMP and nitric oxide in mediating the effects of sildenafil. RESULTS: Phosphodiesterase-5 mRNA and protein was demonstrated in human chorionic plate arteries. Immunohistochemistry demonstrated phosphodiesterase-5 within the arterial muscle layer. Sildenafil citrate produced dose dependent vasodilatation at concentrations at and greater than 10 nM. Both the direct cGMP inhibitor methylene blue and the cGMP-dependent protein kinase inhibitor Rp-8-Br-PET-cGMPS significantly attenuated the vasodilation produced by sildenafil citrate. Inhibition of NO production with L-NAME did not attenuate the vasodilator effects of sildenafil. In contrast, sildenafil citrate significantly enhanced the vasodilation produced by the NO donor sodium nitroprusside. CONCLUSION: Phosphodiesterase-5 is present in the feto-placental circulation. Sildenafil citrate vasodilates the feto-placental circulation via a cGMP dependent mechanism involving increased responsiveness to NO.
    • Hydroxymethylglutaryl-CoA reductase inhibition with simvastatin in Acute lung injury to Reduce Pulmonary dysfunction (HARP-2) trial: study protocol for a randomized controlled trial

      McAuley, Daniel F; Laffey, John G; O’Kane, Cecilia M; Cross, Mark; Perkins, Gavin D; Murphy, Lynn; McNally, Christine; Crealey, Grainne; Stevenson, Michael; and the HARP-2 investigators on behalf of the Irish Critical Care Trials Group (2012-09-17)
      Abstract Background Acute lung injury (ALI) is a common devastating clinical syndrome characterized by life-threatening respiratory failure requiring mechanical ventilation and multiple organ failure. There are in vitro, animal studies and pre-clinical data suggesting that statins may be beneficial in ALI. The Hydroxymethylglutaryl-CoA reductase inhibition with simvastatin in Acute lung injury to Reduce Pulmonary dysfunction (HARP-2) trial is a multicenter, prospective, randomized, allocation concealed, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial which aims to test the hypothesis that treatment with simvastatin will improve clinical outcomes in patients with ALI. Methods/Design Patients fulfilling the American-European Consensus Conference Definition of ALI will be randomized in a 1:1 ratio to receive enteral simvastatin 80 mg or placebo once daily for a maximum of 28 days. Allocation to randomized groups will be stratified with respect to hospital of recruitment and vasopressor requirement. Data will be recorded by participating ICUs until hospital discharge, and surviving patients will be followed up by post at 3, 6 and 12 months post randomization. The primary outcome is number of ventilator-free days to day 28. Secondary outcomes are: change in oxygenation index and sequential organ failure assessment score up to day 28, number of non pulmonary organ failure free days to day 28, critical care unit mortality; hospital mortality; 28 day post randomization mortality and 12 month post randomization mortality; health related quality of life at discharge, 3, 6 and 12 months post randomization; length of critical care unit and hospital stay; health service use up to 12 months post-randomization; and safety. A total of 540 patients will be recruited from approximately 35 ICUs in the UK and Ireland. An economic evaluation will be conducted alongside the trial. Plasma and urine samples will be taken up to day 28 to investigate potential mechanisms by which simvastatin might act to improve clinical outcomes. Trial registration Current Controlled Trials ISRCTN88244364.
    • Hypertonic saline reduces inflammation and enhances the resolution of oleic acid induced acute lung injury

      Kennedy, Muiris T; Higgins, Brendan D; Costello, Joseph F; Curtin, William A; Laffey, John G (2008-07-08)
      Abstract Background Hypertonic saline (HTS) reduces the severity of lung injury in ischemia-reperfusion, endotoxin-induced and ventilation-induced lung injury. However, the potential for HTS to modulate the resolution of lung injury is not known. We investigated the potential for hypertonic saline to modulate the evolution and resolution of oleic acid induced lung injury. Methods Adult male Sprague Dawley rats were used in all experiments. Series 1 examined the potential for HTS to reduce the severity of evolving oleic acid (OA) induced acute lung injury. Following intravenous OA administration, animals were randomized to receive isotonic (Control, n = 12) or hypertonic saline (HTS, n = 12), and the extent of lung injury assessed after 6 hours. Series 2 examined the potential for HTS to enhance the resolution of oleic acid (OA) induced acute lung injury. Following intravenous OA administration, animals were randomized to receive isotonic (Control, n = 6) or hypertonic saline (HTS, n = 6), and the extent of lung injury assessed after 6 hours. Results In Series I, HTS significantly reduced bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) neutrophil count compared to Control [61.5 ± 9.08 versus 102.6 ± 11.89 × 103 cells.ml-1]. However, there were no between group differences with regard to: A-a O2 gradient [11.9 ± 0.5 vs. 12.0 ± 0.5 KPa]; arterial PO2; static lung compliance, or histologic injury. In contrast, in Series 2, hypertonic saline significantly reduced histologic injury and reduced BAL neutrophil count [24.5 ± 5.9 versus 46.8 ± 4.4 × 103 cells.ml-1], and interleukin-6 levels [681.9 ± 190.4 versus 1365.7 ± 246.8 pg.ml-1]. Conclusion These findings demonstrate, for the first time, the potential for HTS to reduce pulmonary inflammation and enhance the resolution of oleic acid induced lung injury.
    • Inhibition of pulmonary Nuclear Factor kappa-B decreases the severity of acute E. coli pneumonia but worsens prolonged pneumonia

      Devaney, James; Curley, Gerard F; Hayes, Mairead; Masterson, Claire; Ansari, Bilal; O'Brien, Timothy; O'Toole, Daniel; Laffey, John G (2013-04-27)
      Abstract Introduction Nuclear factor (NF)-κB is central to the pathogenesis of inflammation in acute lung injury, but also to inflammation resolution and repair. We wished to determine whether overexpression of the NF-κB inhibitor IκBα could modulate the severity of acute and prolonged pneumonia-induced lung injury in a series of prospective randomized animal studies. Methods Adult male Sprague-Dawley rats were randomized to undergo intratracheal instillation of (a) 5 × 109 adenoassociated virus (AAV) vectors encoding the IκBα transgene (5 × 109 AAV-IκBα); (b) 1 × 1010 AAV-IκBα; (c) 5 × 1010 AAV-IκBα; or (d) vehicle alone. After intratracheal inoculation with Escherichia coli, the severity of the lung injury was measured in one series over a 4-hour period (acute pneumonia), and in a second series after 72 hours (prolonged pneumonia). Additional experiments examined the effects of IκBα and null-gene overexpression on E. coli-induced and sham pneumonia. Results In acute pneumonia, IκBα dose-dependently decreased lung injury, improving arterial oxygenation and lung static compliance, reducing alveolar protein leak and histologic injury, and decreasing alveolar IL-1β concentrations. Benefit was maximal at the intermediate (1 × 1010) IκBα vector dose; however, efficacy was diminished at the higher (5 × 1010) IκBα vector dose. In contrast, IκBα worsened prolonged pneumonia-induced lung injury, increased lung bacterial load, decreased lung compliance, and delayed resolution of the acute inflammatory response. Conclusions Inhibition of pulmonary NF-κB activity reduces early pneumonia-induced injury, but worsens injury and bacterial load during prolonged pneumonia.