Effects of bag-mask versus advanced airway ventilation for patients undergoing prolonged cardiopulmonary resuscitation in pre-hospital setting

J Emerg Med. 2012 Feb;42(2):162-70. doi: 10.1016/j.jemermed.2011.02.020. Epub 2011 Oct 26.


Background: There is no evidence that the advanced airway ventilation (AAV) method improves patient outcome in the pre-hospital cardiac arrest setting.

Objective: The aim of this study was to estimate the effectiveness of AAV vs. bag-mask ventilation (BMV) for cardiopulmonary arrest (CPA) patients, when administered by a licensed emergency medical technician in the pre-hospital setting.

Methods: The study used the database of patients who suffered out-of-hospital cardiogenic CPA from 2006 to 2007 in our hospital. Patient records were searched for the method of pre-hospital airway management (BMV or AAV) and the patient's outcomes were compared between groups. The primary endpoint was a favorable neurological outcome; the secondary endpoints were rate of return of spontaneous circulation (ROSC) and rate of admission to the intensive care unit (ICU).

Results: A total of 355 CPA patients (156 BMV and 199 AAV) were retrospectively enrolled. There was no significant difference in demographics between the two groups. The transportation time exceeded 30 min in both groups. The overall ROSC rate and ICU admission rate were significantly higher in the AAV group (p = 0.0352 and p = 0.0089, respectively). The data showed that AAV (odds ratio 1.960; 95% confidence interval 1.015-3.785) resulted in a higher overall ROSC rate than BMV, but there were no significant differences in either the rate of pre-hospital ROSC or in favorable neurological outcome.

Conclusion: AAV may yield advantages over BMV in the overall rate of ROSC in CPA patients, but both approaches for airway management in this study resulted in a comparably favorable neurological outcome. Earlier ROSC would be required for improved overall outcome.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation / methods*
  • Emergency Medical Services*
  • Female
  • Hospitalization / statistics & numerical data
  • Humans
  • Intensive Care Units / statistics & numerical data
  • Intubation, Intratracheal*
  • Male
  • Masks*
  • Odds Ratio
  • Out-of-Hospital Cardiac Arrest / mortality
  • Out-of-Hospital Cardiac Arrest / therapy*
  • Outcome Assessment, Health Care
  • Respiration, Artificial / methods*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Survival Rate
  • Tokyo