Continuous monitoring and download of endotracheal tube cuff pressure for a 12-hour period were required to collect data for an ongoing program of research related to airway management of the critically ill patient. On the basis of reports from the anesthesia literature, continuous monitoring of cuff pressure via a traditional pressure transducer and monitor was identified as the best method to collect data. Although continuous pressure monitoring of many physiologic variables is routine in critical care settings, application of the technology to measurement of endotracheal tube cuff pressure has not been reported outside the operating room. The research team conducted bench testing and pilot testing in human subjects to establish feasibility, accuracy, and safety of continuous cuff pressure monitoring. Monitoring was feasible with stringent procedures applied to ensure safety. A bias of 0.5 cm H2O between continuous and intermittent measures was obtained in both in vitro and in vivo testing.

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