Pediatric upper airway and congenital anomalies

Anesthesiol Clin North Am. 2002 Dec;20(4):747-66. doi: 10.1016/s0889-8537(02)00018-4.


Understanding the differences between the infant upper airway and the adult upper airway is important in properly managing the infant and pediatric airway. Proper history and physical examination and selection of the appropriate endotracheal tubes, LMAs, and laryngoscopes are key to managing the normal infant and pediatric airway. The difficult infant and pediatric airway requires planning, preparation, and teamwork. The LMA, the light wand, and fiberoptic bronchoscope are important tools for managing the difficult pediatric airway. Congenital syndromes associated with difficult airways pose a unique set of challenges. Postoperative problems include postextubation croup and obstructive sleep apnea. Extubating the infant or child with a difficult airway should be orchestrated as carefully as intubating the infant or child with a difficult airway.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Anesthesia, Inhalation
  • Anesthesia, Intravenous
  • Bronchoscopes
  • Child
  • Cleft Palate / pathology
  • Device Removal
  • Down Syndrome / pathology
  • Foreign Bodies / therapy
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Intubation, Intratracheal* / instrumentation
  • Intubation, Intratracheal* / methods
  • Laryngeal Masks
  • Laryngoscopes
  • Laryngoscopy*
  • Larynx / abnormalities*
  • Larynx / anatomy & histology*
  • Mandible / abnormalities
  • Nasal Cavity / abnormalities
  • Nasal Cavity / anatomy & histology
  • Otorhinolaryngologic Neoplasms / surgery
  • Papilloma / surgery
  • Postoperative Complications
  • Tongue / abnormalities
  • Tongue / surgery