Use of a Digital Air Leak Detection Device to Decrease Chest Tube Duration

Author(s): Carla Patel, DNP, APRN, ACNP-BC, Susan D. Ruppert, PhD, RN, FNP-C, ANP-BC, Hue Cao, PA-C, Cheryl Fraser, MSN, APRN, ACNP-BC, TaCharra Laury, DNP, APRN, ACNP-BC, Ara Vaporciyan, MD

Contact Hours 1.00

CERP A 1.00

Expires Dec 31, 2026

Topics: Pulmonary

Population: Adult

Role: APRN

Member: Free
NonMember: $10.00

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Activity Summary

Required reading for all learners: Implicit Bias impacts patient outcomes

Thoracic surgery teams worldwide look for ways to impact chest tube duration. In 2018, the Enhanced Recovery After Surgery Society and the European Society of Thoracic Surgeons published specialty-specific guidelines. Review of the guidelines revealed that chest drain management using a digital device for air leak detection was the one recommendation we were not routinely following. Plus, no standardized way of using the device existed. As an opportunity to incorporate the digital technology, an evidence-based practice project was performed at this institution and demonstrated, employment of a digital air leak detection device in patients who have undergone pulmonary lobectomy can remove interobserver variability and lead to quicker recognition of air leak cessation, earlier chest tube removal, a decrease in hospital LOS, and a lowering of overall costs.


  • Identify three of the causes for a parenchymal air leak.
  • Describe the primary benefit of a digital air leak detection device when compared to a traditional analog device.
  • Describe the two primary outcomes achieved during this evidence based practice project using the digital air leak detection device.

Continuing Education Disclosure Statement

Successful Completion

Learners must attend/view/read the entire activity, read Implicit Bias impacts patient outcomes, and complete the associated evaluation to be awarded the contact hours or CERP. No partial credit will be awarded.


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