SMACC byte: Airway Management Kata

35.jpegIn times of stress it is often difficult for clinicians to retrieve vital information needed to manage their patient. When faced with a difficult airway they may have been taught numerous maneuver/steps to manage the presented challenge. Retrieval can be improved with psychomotor rehearsal which involves both motor and mental rehearsal. Similar to kata used in learning a series of choreographed movements in karate we need to 'chunk' the steps used to manage a difficult airway so that they can be executed with minimal thought. Otherwise referred to as cued-fixed action responses the clinician recognizes difficulty in the form of a specific cue ie. a grade 3 epiglottis only view for DL or  the "too good" view of being too close with VL which triggers a choreographed series of movements (fixed action response) to correct the difficulty. EVLI: Epiglottoscpy, Valleculoscopy, Laryngoscopy and Intubation represent the airway kata that need rehearsal to become imprinted in our motor memory. It is an example of system 1 training that may help us manage airway adversity in times of stress.​





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