Medical Devices: Evidence and Research (Sep 2018)

Rapid fluid administration: an evaluation of two techniques

  • Gillis HC,
  • Walia H,
  • Tumin D,
  • Bhalla T,
  • Tobias JD

Journal volume & issue
Vol. Volume 11
pp. 331 – 336


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Holly C Gillis,1 Hina Walia,2 Dmitry Tumin,2,3 Tarun Bhalla,2,3 Joseph D Tobias1–4 1Department of Pediatrics, Division of Critical Care Medicine, Nationwide Children’s Hospital, Columbus, OH, USA; 2Department of Anesthesiology & Pain Medicine, Nationwide Children’s Hospital, Columbus, OH, USA; 3Department of Pediatrics, The Ohio State University College of Medicine, Columbus, OH, USA; 4Department of Anesthesiology & Pain Medicine, The Ohio State University College of Medicine, Columbus, OH, USA Objective: Rapid administration of fluid remains a cornerstone in treatment of shock and when caring for trauma patients. A range of devices and technologies are available to hasten fluid administration time. While new devices may optimize fluid delivery times, impact on subjective experience compared to traditional methods is poorly documented. Our study evaluated administration time and provider experience using two unique methods for fluid administration. Materials and methods: Prospective comparison of objective and subjective outcomes using a novel infusion device (LifeFlow® Rapid Infuser) and the traditional push–pull syringe method in a simulated model of rapid fluid infusion. Ten paired trials were conducted for each of three intravenous catheter gauges. Providers administered 500 mL of isotonic crystalloid through an intravenous catheter with both LifeFlow and a push–pull device. Administration time was compared between devices using paired t-tests. Participants’ subjective physical demand, effort, pain, and fatigue using each device were recorded using 21-point visual analog scales and compared between devices using sign-rank tests. Results: Fluid administration time was significantly decreased with LifeFlow compared to the push–pull device with the 18-gauge catheter (2.5±0.8 vs 3.8±1.0 minutes; 95% CI of difference: 0.9, 1.8 minutes; P<0.001). Findings were similar for other catheter sizes. No improvements in subjective experience were noted with the LifeFlow device. Increased physical demand with the LifeFlow device was noted with 18 and 22 gauge catheters, and increased fatigue with the LifeFlow device was noted for all catheter sizes. Conclusion: The LifeFlow device was faster than the push–pull syringe method in our simulated scenario. However, provider subjective experience was not improved with the LifeFlow device. Keywords: Resuscitation, Shock, Trauma, Hemodynamics, Crystalloid Solutions