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Mask ventilation using volume-targeted neonatal ventilator for neonatal resuscitation: a randomised cross-over simulation study


Objective To use simulations to compare a novel mask ventilation method using a neonatal ventilator, with mask ventilation using a T-piece resuscitator, to study human factors prior to clinical testing.

Design Prospective randomised cross-over simulation study. Participants were briefly trained to use a neonatal ventilator for mask ventilation. Each participant was fitted with eye-tracking glasses to record visual attention (VA) and performed two simulated preterm neonatal resuscitations in a randomised sequence.

Setting In situ in a neonatal resuscitation room within a Level 3 neonatal intensive care unit.

Participants Healthcare professionals (HCPs) trained in neonatal resuscitation with experience as team leaders.

Interventions Semiautomated, ventilator-based, volume-targeted positive pressure mask ventilation (VTV-PPV) versus manual mask ventilation via T-piece device (T-piece PPV).

Main outcome measures Subjective workload (Surgical Task Load Index, SURG-TLX), VA, quantitative and qualitative postsimulation survey responses.

Results Thirty HCPs participated. HCPs reported higher total SURG-TLX scores (43.5/120 vs 33.8/120) and higher scores in mental demand (8.2/20 vs 5.6/20), physical demand (6.6/20 vs 5.1/20), task complexity (8.2/20 vs 6/20) and situational stress (8.3/20 vs 5.9/20) for VTV-PPV. Temporal demand and distraction scores were similar. While participants took longer to complete VTV-PPV simulations, participants dedicated similar a %VA to the mannikin and T-piece gauges or ventilator screen. More participants increased the rate of ventilation during VTV-PPV; other corrective steps were similar. Overall, participants rated VTV-PPV positively. Participants identified potential challenges with physical ergonomics, cognition and teamwork.

Conclusion Using a neonatal ventilator to perform volume-targeted PPV is feasible, but human factors need to be considered.

  • intensive care units, neonatal
  • resuscitation
  • neonatology
  • technology

Data availability statement

All data relevant to the study are included in the article or uploaded as supplementary information. Eye-tracking and video recordings cannot be shared as participants are identifiable. Other data are included in the article.

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