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A randomized comparison of three intubation techniques/tube materials for nasotracheal intubation.

PURPOSE: We sought to compare three intubation methods using different intubation techniques/tube materials for tube advancement from the nasal cavity into the oral cavity during nasotracheal intubation.

METHODS: We conducted a randomized clinical trial with adult patients scheduled to undergo elective surgery requiring nasotracheal intubation for general anesthesia. Participants were randomly allocated to a polyvinyl chloride (PVC) tube group (group P), PVC tube attached to a rubber catheter group (group PR), or velvet-soft PVC tube group (group V). Tracheal intubation was then performed based on group allocation. The primary outcome was the first-attempt success rate of tube advancement into the oral cavity; secondary outcomes included the time required for tube advancement into the oral cavity, total intubation time, and the incidence of epistaxis.

RESULTS: A total of 149 patients were included in the study. The first-attempt success rate in group V (90%) was significantly higher than that in group P (58%) (odds ratio, 6.5; 95% confidence interval [CI], 2.2 to 19.2), but similar to that in group PR (100%). The mean (standard deviation) time required for tube advancement into the oral cavity was significantly shorter in group V (16 [13] sec) than in group PR [40 (10) sec; 95% CI of mean difference, 17 to 30] and group P (26 [16] sec; 95% CI of mean difference, 3 to 16). Total intubation time was longest in group PR. Epistaxis occurred the least in group V.

CONCLUSIONS: Among the three intubation techniques/tube materials for nasotracheal intubation, the velvet-soft PVC tube provided the highest first-attempt success rate, most expeditious advancement into the oral cavity, and lowest incidence of epistaxis.

STUDY REGISTRATION: ClinicalTrials.gov (NCT04695444); first submitted 30 December 2020.

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