Guidelines and algorithms for managing the difficult airway

Rev Esp Anestesiol Reanim (Engl Ed). 2018 Jan;65(1):41-48. doi: 10.1016/j.redar.2017.07.009. Epub 2017 Oct 12.
[Article in English, Spanish]


The difficult airway constitutes a continuous challenge for anesthesiologists. Guidelines and algorithms are key to preserving patient safety, by recommending specific plans and strategies that address predicted or unexpected difficult airway. However, there are currently no "gold standard" algorithms or universally accepted standards. The aim of this article is to present a synthesis of the recommendations of the main guidelines and difficult airway algorithms.

Keywords: Airway; Algorithms; Algoritmos; Anestesia; Anesthesia; Difficult airway; Guidelines; Guías; Vía aérea; Vía aérea difícil.

MeSH terms

  • Airway Management / methods
  • Airway Management / standards*
  • Algorithms
  • Anesthesia, General
  • Humans
  • Intubation, Intratracheal
  • Practice Guidelines as Topic