A Multifaceted Extubation Protocol to Reduce Reintubation Rates in the Surgical ICU

Benjamin Stocker, Alexandria Byskosh, Hannah Weiss, Courtney L. Devin, Noah Weingarten, Michael Masteller, Alexander Johnston, Joseph Posluszny

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Reintubation is associated with significant morbidity and mortality. The reintubation rate in surgical ICUs (SICUs) is ∼10% nationally but was 17.0% in our SICU. The objective of this study was to determine if the reintubation rate could be reduced with a protocol for extubation assessment and post-extubation care consisting of standardized extubation criteria and targeted interventions for patients at high risk for reintubation. Methods: Standardized extubation criteria for all SICU patients were identified via literature review and best-practice guidelines. High reintubation risk criteria were identified (age ≥ 65 years, chronic cardiopulmonary disease, ≥ 4 days intubated, emergency intubation, and fluid balance ≥ 5 liters) through a literature review and 13-month retrospective review of reintubations in our institution's SICU. Patients meeting at least one criterion putting them at higher risk for reintubation received interventions including post-extubation high-flow nasal cannula for 24 hours and algorithm-guided respiratory therapy. Results: During the 12-month period following protocol implementation, 36 of 402 extubations resulted in reintubations (9.0% vs. 17.0% preintervention, p < 0.001). Among all extubations, 305 (75.9%) were identified as high risk. Among reintubated patients, 34 (94.4%) met high-risk criteria. The mortality rate for reintubated patients was 40.0%, compared to 3.3% in those not reintubated (p < 0.001). The high-risk screening tool had a negative predictive value of 98%. Conclusion: A multifaceted and pragmatic extubation and post-extubation care protocol significantly reduced one SICU's reintubation rate. This protocol can be easily implemented in any SICU to improve patient outcomes following extubation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJoint Commission Journal on Quality and Patient Safety
StateAccepted/In press - 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Leadership and Management


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