Procedures like inserting or removing breathing tubes, which were thought to pose a serious danger of Covid-19 transmission to health workers, produce less aerosols than a normal cough, according to new research published Tuesday.
A particular concern for doctors and nurses during the pandemic has been that intubation — when a tube is placed in the patient’s airway to help them breathe — could create a fine mist of viral particles and create an infection danger for hospital staff.
This has caused health authorities in Britain to classify them as ‘aerosol generating procedures’, meaning health workers need respirators and high level personal protective equipment and the operating rooms are cleaned using a special technique to remove aerosols. Researchers say using this technique has “dramatically” slowed surgery and contributed to long hospital waiting lists.
But a new study published in Anaesthesia, the journal of the Association of Anaesthetists, found that both