There is a growing group of people who are passionate about airway management and minimizing the risks of aspiration and its subsequent effects. An improved technique called Suction Assisted Laryngoscopy and Airway Decontamination (SALAD) has been identified by Dr. James DuCanto.
The SALAD technique calls for constant suction, provided by the SSCOR DuCanto catheter developed by Dr. DuCanto and SSCOR, Inc., in the upper airway, continuously removing vomit, blood and other materials, around which the practitioner intubates the patient via either direct or video laryngoscopy. The technique is demonstrated by Dr. DuCanto in the video below:
What a difference effective suctioning can make to the resuscitated patient. Effective suctioning clears the view for the care giver executing the intubation. It removes material that otherwise might enter the lower airway. Aspiration of foreign material can cause pneumonia slowing recovery or resulting in death.
Pneumonia caused by aspiration or mechanical ventilation is probably the most important complication in comatose post-cardiac arrest patients, occurring in up to 50% of patients after out-of-hospital cardiac arrest. – “Post-cardiac arrest syndrome: Epidemiology, pathophysiology, treatment, and prognostication” – Jerry P. Nolan et al.
The best news is that Dr. DuCanto’s passion for decontaminating an airway is contagious. Just Google “SALAD Suction Technique” and you will see article after article by dedicated medical professionals discussing their experiences with SALAD.
Dr. James C. DuCanto is an anesthesiologist with 20 years’ experience in private practice who possesses substantial experience in the clinical practice and teaching of difficult airway management, as well as the use of patient care simulators.
Dr. DuCanto works at the Aurora St. Luke’s Medical Center in Milwaukee, Wisconsin where he serves as a staff anesthesiologist, Director of the Simulation Center, and director of the Anesthesiology rotation for students and residents.