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Barriers and aids to routine neuromuscular monitoring and consistent reversal practice—A qualitative study


Thomsen, Jakob L D; Marty, Adrian P; Wakatsuki, Shin; Macario, Alex; Tanaka, Pedro; Gätke, Mona R; Østergaard, Doris (2020). Barriers and aids to routine neuromuscular monitoring and consistent reversal practice—A qualitative study. Acta anaesthesiologica Scandinavica, 64(8):1089-1099.

Abstract

Background: Neuromuscular monitoring is recommended whenever a neuromuscular blocking agent is administered, but surveys have demonstrated inconsistent monitoring practices. Using qualitative methods, we aimed to explore barriers and aids to routine neuromuscular monitoring and consistent reversal practice.

Methods: Focus group interviews were conducted to obtain insights into the thoughts and attitudes of individual anaesthetists, as well as the influence of colleagues and department culture. Interviews were conducted at five Danish and one US hospital. Data were analysed using template analysis.

Results: Danish anaesthetists used objective neuromuscular monitoring when administering a non-depolarizing relaxant, but had challenges with calibrating the monitor and sometimes interpreting measurements. Residents from the US institution used subjective neuromuscular monitoring, objective neuromuscular monitoring was generally not available and most had not used it. Danish anaesthetists used neuromuscular monitoring to assess readiness for extubation, whereas US residents used subjective neuromuscular monitoring, clinical tests like 5-second head lift and ventilatory parameters. The residents described a lack of consensus between senior anaesthesiologists in reversal practice and monitoring use. Barriers to consistent and correct neuromuscular monitoring identified included unreliable equipment, time pressure, need for training, misconceptions about pharmacokinetics of neuromuscular blocking agents and residual block, lack of standards and guidelines and departmental culture.

Conclusion: Using qualitative methods, we found that though Danish anaesthetists generally apply objective neuromuscular monitoring routinely and residents at the US institution often apply subjective neuromuscular monitoring, barriers to consistent and correct use still exist.

Abstract

Background: Neuromuscular monitoring is recommended whenever a neuromuscular blocking agent is administered, but surveys have demonstrated inconsistent monitoring practices. Using qualitative methods, we aimed to explore barriers and aids to routine neuromuscular monitoring and consistent reversal practice.

Methods: Focus group interviews were conducted to obtain insights into the thoughts and attitudes of individual anaesthetists, as well as the influence of colleagues and department culture. Interviews were conducted at five Danish and one US hospital. Data were analysed using template analysis.

Results: Danish anaesthetists used objective neuromuscular monitoring when administering a non-depolarizing relaxant, but had challenges with calibrating the monitor and sometimes interpreting measurements. Residents from the US institution used subjective neuromuscular monitoring, objective neuromuscular monitoring was generally not available and most had not used it. Danish anaesthetists used neuromuscular monitoring to assess readiness for extubation, whereas US residents used subjective neuromuscular monitoring, clinical tests like 5-second head lift and ventilatory parameters. The residents described a lack of consensus between senior anaesthesiologists in reversal practice and monitoring use. Barriers to consistent and correct neuromuscular monitoring identified included unreliable equipment, time pressure, need for training, misconceptions about pharmacokinetics of neuromuscular blocking agents and residual block, lack of standards and guidelines and departmental culture.

Conclusion: Using qualitative methods, we found that though Danish anaesthetists generally apply objective neuromuscular monitoring routinely and residents at the US institution often apply subjective neuromuscular monitoring, barriers to consistent and correct use still exist.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Institute of Anesthesiology
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Scopus Subject Areas:Health Sciences > Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine
Uncontrolled Keywords:Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine, General Medicine
Language:English
Date:1 September 2020
Deposited On:02 Dec 2020 16:00
Last Modified:01 Jan 2021 21:02
Publisher:Wiley-Blackwell Publishing, Inc.
ISSN:0001-5172
OA Status:Hybrid
Free access at:PubMed ID. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1111/aas.13606
PubMed ID:32297659

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