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May 8, 2013

Prehospital Airway Management for Out-of-Hospital Cardiac Arrest—Reply

Author Affiliations

Letters Section Editor: Jody W. Zylke, MD, Senior Editor.

Author Affiliations: Department of Emergency Medicine, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston (Drs Hasegawa and Brown) (khasegawa1@partners.org); and Department of Acute Medicine, Kinki University Faculty of Medicine, Osaka, Japan (Dr Hiraide).

JAMA. 2013;309(18):1888-1890. doi:10.1001/jama.2013.3107

In Reply: As we indicated in our article, our study did not collect information on the process of advanced airway management, which would require independent observers. This information would have been beneficial to assess the potential mechanisms between airway management and survival outcomes. In contrast, our nationwide study reflects the effectiveness of advanced airway management in the setting of current practice in a developed nation.

We agree with Dr Bernhard and colleagues that advanced airway techniques may be superior to conventional bag-valve-mask ventilation if one accepts the validity and generalizability of the study they cite.1 That study was a manikin study reporting superior success rates with supraglottic airway devices placed by medical students and was not a real-world assessment of airway management in the prehospital setting.