Kimberly-Clark Health Care recently announced the findings of their prospective, randomized, controlled, multi-center trial on cuffed versus uncuffed endotracheal tubes in small children, which has been published in the British Journal of Anaesthesia. The study found that the incidence of tube exchange was 15 times less in children who received cuffed ET tubes than those who received uncuffed ET tubes. Furthermore, the study confirms that cuffed ET tubes are not associated with an increased risk of airway injury.
The study was conducted under the direction of Drs. Markus Weiss and Andreas Gerber, co-developer of the MICROCUFF Pediatric ET Tube. Gerber is a pediatric anesthesiologist and former chief of anesthesiology at the University Children’s Hospital in Zurich. Gerber and his associates have evaluated the safety and efficacy of MICROCUFF tubes in a wide variety of patients, but this sentinel study is the largest ever in comparing cuffed tubes to uncuffed tubes in the field of pediatric anesthesia.
“The general change to cuffed ET tubes in small children has been hindered by lingering concerns about airway injury, traditional textbook advice and technically unsatisfactory devices,” said Gerber. “However, from this study‘s findings, we are confident that correctly designed cuffed ET tubes have an established role in pediatric airway management.”