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Laboratory and Animal Investigations |

Transtracheal Oxygenation*: An Alternative to Endotracheal Intubation During Cardiac Arrest

Iyad M. Ayoub, MS; Derek J. Brown, BA; Raúl J. Gazmuri, MD, PhD
Author and Funding Information

*From the Medical Service, Section of Critical Care Medicine, North Chicago VA Medical Center and Department of Medicine, Division of Critical Care Medicine, Finch University of Health Sciences/The Chicago Medical School, North Chicago, IL.

Correspondence to: Raúl J. Gazmuri, MD, PhD, Medical Service (111), North Chicago VA Medical Center, 3001 Green Bay Rd, North Chicago, IL, 60064; e-mail: Raul.Gazmuri@med.va.gov



Chest. 2001;120(5):1663-1670. doi:10.1378/chest.120.5.1663
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Study objectives: Because efforts to secure adequate arterial oxygenation during cardiac resuscitation are more important than efforts to promote CO2 elimination, we investigated whether continuous transtracheal oxygenation (TTO) could represent a potentially simpler alternative to conventional positive-pressure ventilation with 100% O2 through an endotracheal tube.

Design: Controlled and randomized.

Setting: Animal laboratory.

Participants: Thirty male Sprague-Dawley rats.

Interventions: The technique for TTO was initially developed and tested in five rats. A model of ventricular fibrillation (VF) was then used to compare the effects of TTO (n = 5) with the effects of O2 delivery through an endotracheal tube as part of positive-pressure ventilation (n = 5) or through a mask without additional airway intervention (n = 5). VF was induced and left untreated for 4 min, after which chest compression and one of the three oxygenation interventions was started. Defibrillation was attempted after 6 min of chest compression. In a subsequent series, defibrillation was attempted after 10 min of chest compression in rats treated with either TTO (n = 5) or endotracheal intubation (ET; n = 5).

Measurement and results: TTO and ET secured adequate arterial Po2 during chest compression (213 ± 77 mm Hg and 154 ± 36 mm Hg; not significant), whereas the mask yielded an arterial Po2 of only 49 ± 38 mm Hg (p < 0.05). Each rat treated with TTO or ET was successfully resuscitated and survived the postresuscitation interval, but none of the rats treated with the mask survived. TTO maintained its efficacy after increased duration of chest compression.

Conclusion: TTO was as effective as conventional positive-pressure ventilation with 100% O2 for securing oxygenation, resuscitation, and short-term survival and more effective than O2 delivered through a mask.

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