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Anesth Analg. 2004 Nov;99(5):1560-3; table of contents.

The laryngeal mask airway Unique versus the Soft Seal laryngeal mask: a randomized, crossover study in paralyzed, anesthetized patients.

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Department of Anesthesia and Intensive Care, Cairns Base Hospital, The Esplanade, Cairns 4870, Australia.


We tested the hypothesis that ease of insertion, oropharyngeal leak pressure, fiberoptic position, ease of ventilation, and mucosal trauma are different for the Soft Seal laryngeal mask airway (SSLM) and the laryngeal mask airway Unique (LMA-U). Ninety paralyzed, anesthetized adult patients (ASA I-II; 18-80 yr old) were studied. Both devices were inserted into each patient in random order. Oropharyngeal leak pressure and fiberoptic position were determined during cuff inflation from 0-40 mL in 10-mL increments and at an intracuff pressure of 60 cm H(2)O. Ease of ventilation was determined by controlling ventilation for 10 min at 8 and 12-mL/kg tidal volume and recording hemoglobin oxygen saturation, end-tidal CO(2), leak fraction, peak airway pressure, and the presence or absence of gastric insufflation. Mucosal trauma was determined by examining the first randomized device for the presence of visible and occult blood. Insertion time was shorter (P = 0.0001) and fewer attempts were required (P = 0.005) for the LMA-U. There were no failed uses of either device. Oropharyngeal leak pressures were similar, but fiberoptic position was superior with the LMA-U (P < or = 0.0003). There were no differences in hemoglobin oxygen saturation, end-tidal CO(2), leak fraction, or peak airway pressure at either tidal volume. Gastric insufflation was not detected in either group at either tidal volume. The frequency of visible (P = 0.009) and occult blood (P = 0.0001) was less with the LMA-U. We conclude that the LMA-U is superior to the SSLM in terms of ease of insertion, fiberoptic position, and mucosal trauma, but similar in terms of oropharyngeal leak pressure and ease of ventilation.

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