Stridor in the Infant Patient

Pediatr Clin North Am. 2022 Apr;69(2):301-317. doi: 10.1016/j.pcl.2021.12.003.


Stridor is a high-pitched extrathoracic noise associated with turbulent airflow, commonly associated with respiratory distress in infants. Workup for stridor requires evaluation of the upper-respiratory airway, with severe distress requiring evaluation under anesthesia. The differential diagnosis of stridor depends on location of the obstruction, age of the patient, and acuity of the symptoms. The most common reason is laryngomalacia; most patients can be managed conservatively with resolution of symptoms by 2 years of age. In children who do not improve or have severe disease, supraglottoplasty is the treatment of choice, and the majority will have resolution of stridor postoperatively.

Keywords: Congenital laryngomalacia; Laryngomalacia; Pediatric airway; Stridor; Supraglottoplasty.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Anesthesia*
  • Child
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Laryngomalacia* / complications
  • Laryngomalacia* / diagnosis
  • Laryngomalacia* / surgery
  • Larynx*
  • Respiratory Sounds / diagnosis
  • Respiratory Sounds / etiology