Frequency and Analysis of Unplanned Extubation in Coronavirus Disease 2019 Patients

Anoop K. Chhina, Gary E. Loyd, Trevor J. Szymanski, Katherine A. Nowak, William T. Peruzzi, Nicholas S. Yeldo, Xiaoxia Han, Lotfi S. Kerzabi, Dragos M. Galusca, Simona Cazacu, Chaya Brodie, Donald H. Penning

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objectives: To determine if patients with coronavirus disease 2019 had a greater number of unplanned extubations resulting in reintubations than in patients without coronavirus disease 2019. Design: Retrospective cohort study comparing the frequency of unplanned extubations resulting in reintubations in a group of coronavirus disease 2019 patients to a historical (noncoronavirus disease 2019) control group. Setting: This study was conducted at Henry Ford Hospital, an academic medical center in Detroit, MI. The historical noncoronavirus disease 2019 patients were treated in the 68 bed medical ICU. The coronavirus disease 2019 patients were treated in the coronavirus disease ICU, which included the 68 medical ICU beds, 18 neuro-ICU beds, 32 surgical ICU beds, and 40 cardiovascular ICU beds, as the medical ICU was expanded to these units at the peak of the pandemic in Detroit, MI. Patients: The coronavirus disease 2019 cohort included patients diagnosed with coronavirus disease 2019 who were intubated for respiratory failure from March 12, 2020, to April 13, 2020. The historic control (noncoronavirus disease 2019) group consisted of patients who were admitted to the medical ICU in the year spanning from November 1, 2018 to October 31, 2019, with a need for mechanical ventilation that was not related to surgery or a neurologic reason. Interventions: None. Measurements and Main Results: To identify how many patients in each cohort had unplanned extubations, an electronic medical records query for patients with two intubations within 30 days was performed, in addition to a review of our institutional quality and safety database of reported self-extubations. Medical charts were manually reviewed by board-certified anesthesiologists to confirm each event was an unplanned extubation followed by a reintubation within 24 hours. There was a significantly greater incidence of unplanned extubations resulting in reintubation events in the coronavirus disease 2019 cohort than in the noncoronavirus disease 2019 cohort (coronavirus disease 2019 cohort: 167 total admissions with 22 events - 13.2%; noncoronavirus disease 2019 cohort: 326 total admissions with 14 events - 4.3%; p < 0.001). When the rate of unplanned extubations was expressed per 100 intubated days, there was not a significant difference between the groups (0.88 and 0.57, respectively; p = 0.269). Conclusions: Coronavirus disease 2019 patients have a higher incidence of unplanned extubation that requires reintubation than noncoronavirus disease 2019 patients. Further study is necessary to evaluate the variables that contribute to this higher incidence and clinical strategies that can reduce it.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)E0291
JournalCritical Care Explorations
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2020
Externally publishedYes


  • anesthesia
  • coronavirus disease 2019
  • extubation
  • intensive care unit
  • intubation
  • sedation
  • unplanned extubation

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine


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