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Cuffed endotracheal tubes for neonates and young infants: a comprehensive review
  1. Rebecca Thomas1,2,
  2. Shripada Rao1,2,3,
  3. Corrado Minutillo1
  1. 1Neonatal Clinical Care Unit, Princess Margaret Hospital for Children, Perth, Western Australia, Australia
  2. 2Centre for Neonatal Research and Education, School of Paediatrics and Child Health, University of Western Australia, Perth, Western Australia, Australia
  3. 3Neonatal Clinical Care Unit, King Edward Memorial Hospital for Women, Perth, Western Australia, Australia
  1. Correspondence to Dr Rebecca Thomas, Princess Margaret Hospital for Children, Neonatal Clinical Care Unit, Roberts Road, Subiaco, WA 6008, Australia; Rebecca.Thomas2{at}


Traditionally, uncuffed endotracheal tubes (ETTs) have been used for artificial ventilation of infants and children. More recently, newer designed high-volume low-pressure (HVLP) cuffed ETTs are being used with increasing frequency in infants from birth. Considering that many paediatric anaesthetists and intensivists are already using cuffed ETTs in infants >3 kg from birth, should neonatologists be doing the same? This review examines the reasons behind the traditional use of uncuffed ETTs and the problems associated with their use; newer HVLP cuffed ETTs and what they can potentially offer neonates; and reviews evidence from studies comparing the use of cuffed and uncuffed ETTs in neonates and small infants.

  • Neonatology
  • Intensive Care
  • Anaesthetics
  • Respiratory

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