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The main question here is how quickly should such a procedure take in order for it to be considered a success? Clearly, it should take less than 4 minutes given that is how long a brain can survive without oxygen before permanent damage sets in.
According to the literature, the range of what is considered "acceptable" duration of time to perform an emergency surgical airway ranges from 40 to 180 seconds. Most consider shooting for a goal of 90 seconds to be a reasonable compromise of how long an emergency surgical airway should take to perform.
Of course, success is defined not only on how quickly it can be performed, but also performed without complications which principally includes inserting the breathing tube somewhere other than the windpipe. Other complications include cutting into the esophagus or perforating the carotid artery.
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