Features  |   September 2013
Videolaryngoscopy and the Difficult Airway
Article Information
Airway Management / Features
Features   |   September 2013
Videolaryngoscopy and the Difficult Airway
ASA Monitor 09 2013, Vol.77, 24-25.
ASA Monitor 09 2013, Vol.77, 24-25.
Videolaryngoscopy made its introduction to airway management more than 10 years ago. Since this time, we have learned much about the utility of the devices and have generated questions to guide future investigation. What is clear is that these tools generally provide an improved and magnified laryngeal view compared to direct laryngoscopy. Research has attempted to identify whether these benefits translate to an improvement in actual intubation difficulty and/or success rate. As success rates for tracheal intubation utilizing direct laryngoscopy in experienced hands is very high, there does not seem to be added benefit beyond improvement of laryngeal view for the undifferentiated airway across age spectrums.1,2  However, evidence has made it clearer that videolaryngoscopy eases intubation difficulty and increases first-attempt success rates in the airway predicted to be difficult to intubate by direct laryngscopy.3 -5  These benefits are seen for patients who are obese, have a raised Mallampati score, and reduced cervical motion from pathology or cervical spine precautions.
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