Securing an airway is a vital task for the anesthesiologist. The pediatric patients have significant anatomical and physiological differences compared with adults, which impact on the techniques and tools that the anesthesiologist might choose to provide safe and effective control of the airway. Furthermore, there are a number of pathological processes, typically seen in the pediatric population, which present unique anatomical or functional difficulties in airway management. The presence of one of these syndromes or conditions can predict a "difficult airway." Many instruments and devices are currently available which have been designed to aid in airway management. Some of these have been adapted from adult designs, but in many cases require alterations in technique to account for the anatomical and physiological differences of the pediatric patient. This review focuses on assessment and management of pediatric airway and highlights the unique challenges encountered in children.
Keywords: Airway anatomy; congenital syndromes; difficult intubation; pediatric airway.