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Saturday, October 12, 2013

The GlideScope

I have seen it used twice now, both on very difficult intubations.  It's a neat, simple little device.  It's a GlideScope.  The blade is made of hard plastic and is disposable.  It slips onto the handle.  A metal stylette with a camera is inserted into the ETT.  A signal is sent to the monitor, which shows the airway of the patient.
The intubator blindly inserts the ETT, and watches the monitor.  As he sees the vocal cords, he pushes the tube through.  On the monitor we can all watch as the tube goes through.  There is no further need to verify the intubation, as we all saw it with our own eyes.

I can imagine these are expensive, so that must explain every time we need one we have to call anesthesiology, who has to bring it.  Sometimes the anesthesiologist is called to intubate and merely assumes easy intubation.  So when he realizes the intubation is difficult, he has to either send someone down to his office, or he has to go fetch it himself.

Either way, it would be nice if all intubation were made with a GlideScope.  I would imagine that as costs go down, all intubations will be used with a Glidescope.  They will be conveniently located wherever airway boxes and crash carts are located.

Note: The link above is not meant to be an endorsement, only to show the product.

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