Endotracheal tubes are used for endotracheal intubation to maintain an open airway or to administer drugs. Presently endotracheal tubes made up of disposable, transparent and hypoallergenic materials are preferred. Endotracheal tubes have a proximal end, a central portion and a distal end and may be cuffed or uncuffed. The use of endotracheal tubes is indicated for mechanical ventilation, during resuscitation, for intermittent positive pressure ventilation (IPPV), in conditions like tetanus and for supporting ventilation during general anaesthesia. Endotracheal tubes may be inserted into the trachea through the mouth or the nose. Endotracheal tubes usually have an inflatable cuff that is used to seal the broncheal tree and the trachea against various secretions, gastric contents and fluids. Most endotracheal tubes are constructed using polyvinyl chloride (PVC). Specialty endotracheal tubes may be constructed using other materials such as silicone rubber, latex rubber and stainless steel.
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