Background: This clinical practice guideline addresses six questions related to liberation from mechanical ventilation in critically ill adults. It is the result of a collaborative effort between the American Thoracic Society and the American College of Chest Physicians.
Methods: A multidisciplinary panel posed six clinical questions in a Population, Intervention, Comparator, and Outcomes format. A comprehensive literature search and evidence synthesis was performed for each question, which included appraising the certainty in the evidence (i.e., the quality of evidence) using the Grading of Recommendations, Assessment, Development, and Evaluation approach. The Evidence-to-Decision framework was applied to each question, requiring the panel to evaluate and weigh the importance of the problem, the confidence in the evidence, the certainty about how much the public values the main outcomes, the magnitude and balance of desirable and undesirable outcomes, the resources and costs associated with the intervention, the impact on health disparities, and the acceptability and feasibility of the intervention.
Results: Evidence-based recommendations were formulated and graded initially by subcommittees and then modified after full-panel discussions. The recommendations were confirmed by confidential electronic voting; approval required that at least 80% of the panel members agree with the recommendation.
Conclusions: The panel provides recommendations regarding liberation from mechanical ventilation. The details regarding the evidence and rationale for each recommendation are presented in the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine and Chest.