Trends in Endotracheal Intubation during In-Hospital Cardiac Arrests: 2001-2018

American Heart Association's Get With the Guidelines-Resuscitation Investigators

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVES: Airway management during in-hospital cardiac arrest represents a fundamental component of resuscitative efforts, yet little is known about temporal trends in intubation during in-hospital cardiac arrest. Our objective was to investigate changes in in-hospital cardiac arrest airway management over time and in response to national guideline updates. DESIGN: Observational cohort study of a prospectively collected database. SETTING: Multicenter study of hospitals participating in the "Get With The Guidelines - Resuscitation"registry from January 1, 2001, to December 31, 2018. SUBJECTS: Adult patients who experienced an in-hospital cardiac arrest and did not have an invasive airway in place prior to the arrest. INTERVENTIONS: The primary outcome was the rate of intra-arrest intubation from 2001 to 2018. We constructed multivariable regression models with generalized estimating equations to determine the annual adjusted odds of intubation. We also assessed the timing of intubation relative to the onset of pulselessness and other arrest measures. We used an interrupted time-series analysis to assess the association between the 2010 Advanced Cardiac Life Support guideline update and intubation rates. MEASUREMENTS AND MAIN RESULTS: One thousand sixty-six eight hundred patients from 797 hospitals were included. From 2001 to 2018, the percentage of patients intubated during an arrest decreased from 69% to 55% for all rhythms, 73% to 60% for nonshockable rhythms, and 58% to 36% for shockable rhythms (p < 0.001 for trend for all 3 groups). The median time from onset of pulselessness to intubation increased from 5 minutes in 2001 (interquartile range, 2-8 min) to 6 minutes in 2018 (interquartile range, 4-10 min) (p < 0.001 for trend). Following the 2010 guideline update, there was a downward step change and a steeper decrease over time in the rate of intubation as compared to the preintervention period (p < 0.001). CONCLUSIONS: Endotracheal intubation rates during in-hospital cardiac arrest have decreased significantly over time, with a more substantial decline following the updated 2010 guideline that prioritized chest compressions over airway management.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)72-80
Number of pages9
JournalCritical care medicine
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2022


  • Advanced cardiac life support
  • Airway management
  • Cardiac arrest
  • Intubation
  • Resuscitation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine


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