AUTHORS: Maarten van Dijck, Bernard M Houweling et al.
Anaesth Intensive Care. 2020 Nov 22
Accidental extubation in the prone position is a medical emergency in which quick and low resource demanding airway management is required. Regaining oxygenation is the primary goal, but sometimes intubation may be required to regain oxygenation. Blind intubation through an i-gel® (Intersurgical Ltd, Wokingham, Berkshire, UK) may be a quick and low resource demanding method. However, the success rate of the use of an i-gel as an intubation conduit in the prone position is unknown. This was a prospective study in patients scheduled for lumbar surgery. General anaesthesia was induced in the prone position and an i-gel was inserted. After successful ventilation, up to three attempts at intubation using a VivaSight-SL single-lumen tube (Ambu A/S, Ballerup, Denmark) were performed. The first attempt was blinded for the operator and the patient’s head was in a neutral position. The second attempt was blinded for the operator with the patient’s head rotated laterally. The third attempt was on-screen and allowed various manoeuvres to facilitate intubation. A success rate of 70% was deemed clinically acceptable. The study was terminated early after 14 subjects because the success rate of 70% was not achievable. However, ventilation using the i-gel in the prone position was successful in 13 patients (93%). Intubation was successful in only one patient at the first attempt, one patient at the second attempt and three patients at the third attempt. Overall, the success rate was 36%. Blind intubation using an i-gel as an intubation conduit in the prone position is not recommended