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NEW FROM THE OMS GUARDIAN

AIRWAY MANAGEMENT CHANGES - 2015-2020 ACLS GUIDELINES
Michael J. Stronczek, DDS, MS
OMSNIC Director and Chair, Patient Safety & Risk Management

 

The American Heart Association’s (AHA) Guidelines for advanced cardiac life support (ACLS) continue to evolve. The most recent recommendations for airway management support the steps that we, as Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeons (OMS), typically take when faced with a compromised airway. Let’s look at some of the latest airway management changes to the AHA’s ACLS Guidelines.1

 

(1) Since January 2014, the use of capnography has been recommended for daily use in OMS practices for anesthesia monitoring.2 The new ACLS Guidelines recommend the use of capnography, in addition to clinical assessment, during airway management. If an advanced airway, like an endotracheal tube is placed during a respiratory event, continuous waveform capnography is recommended to be used to confirm3 and monitor appropriate tube placement, assist in monitoring the quality of CPR provided, and determining when a patient has return of spontaneous circulation (ROSC).4 As OMS, while we are very comfortable using capnography with an open system like a nasal cannula or a nasal hood, it is essential we make sure we also have the appropriate connectors to adapt the capnography device to an emergency airway as well.

 

 

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