Silver-coated endotracheal tube dramatically reduces resistant infections

May 19, 2008

A silver-coated endotracheal tube may reduce infections with highly resistant bacteria over traditional tubes by nearly half, according to the results of a large randomized trial to be presented at the American Thoracic Society’s 2008 International Conference in Toronto on Monday, May 19.

Patients who are on ventilators are often at risk for developing ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAP) because of resistant bacteria.

“VAP is a serious disease with significant mortality,” said lead investigator, Andrew Shorr, M.D., M.P.H., of Washington Hospital Center in Washington, D.C. “Crude mortality rates from VAP approach 25 to 30 percent and VAP rates are now thought to reflect hospital quality. These infections include highly resistant pathogens, such as methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus or MRSA, which are the most troubling ones and often the hardest to treat. The average costs associated with treatment of VAP exceed $40,000 because of the impact on length of stay in the ICU.”

To test the efficacy of the silver-coated tube in preventing infections, the study included a modified intention-to-treat population of 1,509 subjects, balanced between traditional endotracheal tubes and the silver coated ones. The researchers used brochoavelolar lavage fluid cultures to ascertain the presence of pathogenic organisms and classified as “highly resistant” organisms MRSA, Pseudomonas aeruginosa (PA) and Acinetobacter bumanii (AB).

They found that VAP in all its forms was reduced by nearly 40 percent in the population with the silver-coated endotracheal tubes and that highly resistant infections were less than half as likely to occur in those with the silver-coated tubes.

“What we show in this present analysis is that the silver-coated breathing tube prevents infections due to the most highly resistant pathogens. Other prevention strategies for VAP have not always been shown to impact the rates of infection with these highly resistant strains,” said Dr. Shorr. “Given the importance of MRSA, PA and AB in the ICU, utilization of the silver-coated endotracheal tube may help contain the spread of antimicrobial resistance.”

Source: American Thoracic Society

Related Stories

Recommended for you

Pickled in 'cognac', Chopin's heart gives up its secrets

November 26, 2017
The heart of Frederic Chopin, among the world's most cherished musical virtuosos, may finally have given up the cause of his untimely death.

Sugar industry withheld evidence of sucrose's health effects nearly 50 years ago

November 21, 2017
A U.S. sugar industry trade group appears to have pulled the plug on a study that was producing animal evidence linking sucrose to disease nearly 50 years ago, researchers argue in a paper publishing on November 21 in the ...

Female researchers pay more attention to sex and gender in medicine

November 7, 2017
When women participate in a medical research paper, that research is more likely to take into account the differences between the way men and women react to diseases and treatments, according to a new study by Stanford researchers.

Drug therapy from lethal bacteria could reduce kidney transplant rejection

August 3, 2017
An experimental treatment derived from a potentially deadly microorganism may provide lifesaving help for kidney transplant patients, according to an international study led by investigators at Cedars-Sinai.

Exploring the potential of human echolocation

June 25, 2017
People who are visually impaired will often use a cane to feel out their surroundings. With training and practice, people can learn to use the pitch, loudness and timbre of echoes from the cane or other sounds to navigate ...

Team eradicates hepatitis C in 10 patients following lifesaving transplants from infected donors

April 30, 2017
Ten patients at Penn Medicine have been cured of the Hepatitis C virus (HCV) following lifesaving kidney transplants from deceased donors who were infected with the disease. The findings point to new strategies for increasing ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.