Background: Although the use of an anesthesiology “airway” rotation to train the nonanesthesiologist is commonly employed, little data exist on the utility, clinical exposure, and outcomes of these programs.
Methods: A prospectively collected observational dataset of airway procedures completed by trainees in a 4-week, anesthesiology-based, airway rotation at an academic, level-1 trauma center from July 2010 to September 2012 was reviewed. Prospectively defined data points were collected through an online data tool and included patient demographics, location, date, best laryngoscopic view, and attempt details. At the authors’ institution, an attending trauma anesthesiologist is present for all intubation attempts. The primary outcome was first-attempt success.
Results: A total of 4,282 self-reported, airway procedures were identified. The median number of procedures performed was 50.4 ± 13.2 (range, 20 to 93; 25th quartile = 41; 75th quartile = 57). Multivariate logistic regression analysis modeling of first-attempt success rate identified two independent predictors of success: rotation week (odds ratio, 1.42; 95% CI, 1.32 to 1.61; P < 0.0001) and number of previous intubation attempts before rotation (odds ratio, 1.23; 95% CI, 1.03 to 1.46; P = 0.02. In addition, the percentage of cases with a self-reported laryngoscopic grade 1 view increased significantly from 61 to 74% (P = 0.015) from week 1 to week 4 of the rotation.
Conclusions: An anesthesiology-based program for airway training of nonanesthesiologists demonstrates improved self-reported, perceived first-attempt success over the course of training with improved ability to visualize glottic structures.