Reaffirmed February 2018, April 2012, October 2006, October 2000
Originally approved September 1996
Rapid-sequence intubation (RSI) is an important technique for airway management of patients in the emergency department and is in the domain of emergency medicine practice. RSI is defined as a technique where a potent sedative or induction agent is administered virtually simultaneously with a paralyzing dose of a neuromuscular blocking agent to facilitate rapid tracheal intubation. The technique includes specific protection against aspiration of gastric contents, provides excellent access to the airway for intubation, and permits pharmacologic control of adverse responses to illness, injury, and the intubation itself. The American College of Emergency Physicians recognizes the role of RSI in modern emergency care and supports the following principles.