AiR – Learning from the Airway Registry [March 2018]

Intubations this month:          21

Airway Registry learning points reflect the challenges described and wisdom shared by Sydney HEMS personnel and guests at the Clinical Governance Airway Registry presentation for March 2018. Cases are discussed non-contemporaneously, anonymised and amalgamated over a time period to draw together unifying take-home messages. Details of specific cases are removed and/or changed, such that any similarity to real-life patients or scenarios is coincidental.

All CMAC videos are shared under a Creative Commons Licence: Attribution 2.0 Generic. Please familiarise yourself with the terms of the licence before reusing our videos.

To view these videos, you will need this password: AiRblogVideos

Focus on: Airway Management in the Septic, Hypotensive Patient

We have previously discussed the guidelines for intubation of the critically ill from December 2017.

The authors suggest that peri-intubation haemodynamic management and the prevention of hypotension/cardiac arrest at induction can include:

  • Addressing causes of hypotension in the patient
  • Drug choices – Ketamine & Rocuronium
  • Rapid volume replacement available with institution of IPPV
  • Vasopressor/inotrope boluses available
  • Vasopressor infusion before induction

It is prudent to increase the noradrenaline infusion rate on any septic, hypotensive patient with noradrenaline running before RSI drugs are administered. Likewise, adrenaline boluses (10mcg/ml & 100mcg/ml) should be prepared before RSI drugs are given. A rapidly flowing IV access line is useful to ensure drugs reach the circulation but also to be able to offset the physiology change of reduced preload with IPPV.

Video Focus: Other Things You Might See in the Airway


These two videos [password: AiRblogVideos] show some laryngoscopy findings in burns patients.

The first (very short!) shows soot, on the face as the CMAC is inserted and on the cords at laryngoscopy.

The second shows very mildly sooty snot in the airway of a patient with 35% TBSA burns just before the epiglottis is visualised. Sooty snot on nose-blowing was part of the rationale for intubation in this patient.

Other Things You Might See

This video shows the appearance of a single (right sided) NPA during passage of the CMAC laryngoscope through the oropharynx.

This video shows the appearance of bilateral NPAs during passage of the CMAC laryngoscope through the oropharynx.

This video shows the appearance of a denture plate during passage of the CMAC laryngoscope through the oropharynx. This is not secured and should be removed; it’s easy to see how it could cause a complete airway obstruction.

In this video, the presence of blood in the airway in combination with the use of the LUCAS device to provide CPR means that the view is totally lost when the blood hits the camera.

You can see all the AiR videos here on our Vimeo page or here on the blog.

About Natalie May

EM and PEM-trained UK doctor working in Prehospital & Retrieval Medicine in Australia. Evolving medical education interest, running enthusiast, karaoke queen. Here for the #FOAMed.
This entry was posted in Airway, Airway Registry, General PH&RM and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s