One of the words we heard frequently during the coronavirus epidemic was intubation. The Ministry of Health publishes the corona virus table with the rates every day. One of the published information is the number of ‘intubated patients’.
Intubation is the process of inserting a tube called endotracheal tube (ET) into the mouth and then into the respiratory tract. This tube acts as a passage in the upper respiratory tract. The purpose of endotracheal intubation is to allow air to pass freely into the lungs to ventilate the lungs. This is done to help a patient breathe during anesthesia or serious illness. The patients with this procedure are called ‘intubated patients’. The intubation procedure supports the COVID-19 patient’s breathing, so the patient can survive while the immune system is fighting the virus. However, intubation cannot treat COVID-19.
Illustration: Joshua Seong