Skip to main page content
Access keys NCBI Homepage MyNCBI Homepage Main Content Main Navigation
Case Reports
, 18 (1), 92

Face-to-face Intubation Using a Lightwand in a Patient With Severe Thoracolumbar Kyphosis: A Case Report

Case Reports

Face-to-face Intubation Using a Lightwand in a Patient With Severe Thoracolumbar Kyphosis: A Case Report

Hyungmo Jeong et al. BMC Anesthesiol.


Background: Severe deformity of the thoracolumbar spine may cause difficulty in airway management during induction of anesthesia. Therefore, special attention must be devoted to patient safety.

Case presentation: A 65-year-old male with severe thoracolumbar kyphosis was scheduled to undergo posterior spinal fusion under general anesthesia. Due to his inability to lie supine, conventional tracheal intubation under direct laryngoscopy was difficult. Alternatively, face-to-face tracheal intubation using a lightwand in the semi-recumbent position was performed. Intubation was successful on the first attempt without any complications.

Conclusions: The face-to-face intubation technique using a lightwand is one of several alternative techniques for tracheal intubation in patients who cannot lie supine.

Keywords: Difficult airway; Face-to-face intubation; Kyphosis; Lightwand.

Conflict of interest statement

Ethics approval and consent to participate

Written informed consent was obtained from the patient. The consent form will be provided upon request.

Consent for publication

Written informed consent was obtained from the participants for publication of this article and any accompanying tables/images. A copy of the written consent is available for review by the Editor of this journal.

Competing interests

The authors declare that they have no competing interests.

Publisher’s Note

Springer Nature remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published maps and institutional affiliations.


Fig. 1
Fig. 1
Thoraco-lumbar kyphosis. The patient exhibited severe kyphosis (approximately 115 degrees), with abnormal contour changes and vertebral body fusions at the level of T10–L3 (white arrow)
Fig. 2
Fig. 2
Position during tracheal intubation. Face-to-face intubation using a lightwand was performed successfully with the patient in the sitting position

Similar articles

See all similar articles


    1. Saracoglu KT, Baygin O, Kafali IH. Kyphoscoliosis and difficult airway management. FNG & Bilim Tip Dergisi. 2015;1(1):43–47. doi: 10.5606/fng.btd.2015.009. - DOI
    1. Hsieh PS, Ma HP, Wong CS, Ong JR. Emergency tracheal intubation in an ankylosing spondylitis patient in a sitting position using an airway scope combined with face-to-face and digital intubation. The journal of emergency medicine. 2018:1–4. - PubMed
    1. Jain M, Garg S, Rastogi B, Singh V, Gupta K, Tiwari V. Comparative evaluation of lightwand(lighted stylet) with direct laryngoscopy on hemodynamic response - a prospective study. Journal of anesthesia & clinical research. 2014;5:7.
    1. Andjelic S. Face-to-face intubation in traumatised patients. Anestezjologia i Ratownictwo. 2009;3:193–197.
    1. Choi HY, Oh YM, Kang GH, Kang H, Jang YS, Kim W, Kim E, Cho YS, Choi H, Kim H et al. A randomized comparison simulating face to face endotracheal intubation of Pentax airway scope, C-MAC video laryngoscope, Glidescope video laryngoscope, and Macintosh laryngoscope. Biomed Res Int 2015;961782. - PMC - PubMed

Publication types