Intubation is the process of inserting a tube through the mouth or nose into the airway. The tube is attached to a ventilator that mechanically breathes for the patient. The process can help both people undergoing surgery and those who cannot breathe on their own due to injury or illness.
Intubation maintains the airway during anesthesia or if a patient needs critical breathing support. When a patient is undergoing surgery, intubation is a routine, controlled procedure. In the event of extensive trauma or critical illness such as heart failure, emphysema, pneumonia, or a collapsed lung, intubation is a life-saving intervention.
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