In rabbits, undergoing general anaesthesia, does the placement of a v-gel® device result in less airway trauma compared to the use of other airway management devices?
Clinical bottom line
Category of research question
The number and type of study designs reviewed
Three papers were critically appraised, two blinded randomised experimental trial studies and one randomised crossover experimental trial study
Strength of evidence
One blinded randomised trial study demonstrated that the trauma to the upper airways of rabbits during anaesthesia is not significantly different between the use of v-gel® and an endotracheal tube. The other blinded randomised trial study demonstrated that the trauma to the upper airway caused by endotracheal intubation is significantly more than that caused by v-gel® placement. The randomised crossover trial study demonstrated that v-gel® placement causes more significant compression to the larynx compared to a laryngeal mask or face mask
The current evidence suggests that use of the v-gel® in rabbits causes less trauma / injury to the airways compared to placement of an endotracheal tube but not compared to the use of a laryngeal or face mask. However, based on the low number and quality of published studies, this evidence is weak, and better-quality studies are required to support the routine use of v-gel® over other airway devices in rabbits. While v-gel® may be a safer alternative for securing airways in rabbits compared to endotracheal intubation, knowing the injuries this device can cause to the upper airways is useful for managing rabbits during post anaesthesia recovery
How to apply this evidence in practice
The application of evidence into practice should take into account multiple factors, not limited to: individual clinical expertise, patient’s circumstances and owners’ values, country, location or clinic where you work, the individual case in front of you, the availability of therapies and resources.
Knowledge Summaries are a resource to help reinforce or inform decision making. They do not override the responsibility or judgement of the practitioner to do what is best for the animal in their care.
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