1Staff Anesthetist and Intensive Care Physician, Department of Anesthesia and Intensive Care, Empress Elisabeth Hospital of the City of Vienna, Vienna, Austria.
Address correspondence and comments toSchirin M. Missaghi.
Received from the
Department of Anesthesia
and Intensive Care, Empress Elisabeth Hospital
of the City of Vienna, Vienna, Austria.
July 10, 2007.
Received from the Department of Anesthesia and Intensive Care, Empress Elisabeth Hospital of the City of Vienna, Vienna, Austria.
Published: July 10, 2007.
The correct citation of this correspondence is:
Use of the disposable
Airtraq Optical Laryngoscope for orotracheal intubation in patients
with infectious diseases.
Internet Journal of Airway Management
Date accessed: month day, year.
Last updated: December 31, 2007.
The battery-powered, portable Airtraq Optical Laryngoscope (AOL; manufactured by Prodol Meditec, Vizcaya, Spain) is a new disposable device that proved to be uniquely useful for routine and difficult laryngoscopy and orotracheal intubation (1-4). The advantages of the AOL are that the entire unit is disposable and the optical system is resistant to fogging (mechanism: immediate warming-up to body temperature).
Hygienic reprocessing of reusable airway management (AM) devices may be problematic, particularly after use in patients with transferable infectious diseases. We therefore started in April 2007 with the routine use of the disposable AOL for laryngoscopy and tracheal intubation in patients with transferable infectious diseases (mainly caused by hepatitis C virus). Twenty patients (including 5 with anatomic features predictive for difficult conventional laryngoscopy and tracheal intubation) are now included in this evaluation; AOL-assisted tracheal intubation with a standard tracheal tube was successful at the first attempt (with laryngeal views of the entire laryngeal aperture) in all of these patients. This procedure may further eliminate possible cross-contamination associated with AM devices.
Recently, three video laryngoscope systems with dedicated disposable laryngoscope blades (DBLs; supplied in sterile packaging) were launched: the AirWay Scope [Pentax Corporation, Tokyo, Japan (5)], the GlideScope Cobalt Video Laryngoscope [GCVL; Verathon Medical, Bothell, Washington, United States (6)], and the McGrath Portable Video Laryngoscope [Aircraft Medical, Edinburgh, United Kingdom (7)]. They may be less suitable in this patient population because the reusable handles (and the camera systems) may become contaminated during laryngoscopy and the tracheal intubation process and their thorough hygienic reprocessing is limited. The DBL of the GCVL also covers the handle of the GCVL and may be a potential alternative to the AOL.
The costs of the standard AOL for orotracheal intubation are reasonable (about 48 Euro, exclusive value-added taxes, according to the offer of the Austrian distributor, queried in March 2007)
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