Schmitt Anesthesiology 2000 – Difficult Intubation and Acromegaly

Short Citation: Anesthesiology 2000;93(1):110-4.

PubMed PMID: 10861153

Full Citation: Schmitt H, Buchfelder M, Radespiel-Tröger M, Fahlbusch R. Difficult intubation in acromegalic patients: incidence and predictability. Anesthesiology 2000;93(1):110-4.

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Study Size: 128

Findings: Laryngoscopy was difficult (grade III) in 33 of 128 patients (26%). Application of external laryngeal pressure improved laryngeal visualization to grade II in 20 of these 33 patients. In the remaining 13 patients (10%), intubation was difficult (more than two attempts, blade change, use of gum-elastic bougie). Mallampati classes 3 and 4 were significantly related to laryngoscopy grade III (Fisher exact test, P = 0.001).

Authors' Conclusions: The incidence of difficult laryngoscopy and intubation in acromegalic patients is higher than in normal patients. Preoperative Mallampati scores of 3 and 4 were of value in predicting difficult laryngoscopy. Nevertheless, even this test will miss a significant number of patients with a difficult airway.

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