The esophageal obturator airway: a clinical comparison to ventilation with a mask and oropharyngeal airway

Chest. 1978 Nov;74(5):537-9. doi: 10.1378/chest.74.5.537.


We compared controlled ventilation with the esophageal obturator airway to ventilation with a conventional rubber mask and oropharyngeal airway in ten anesthetized patients. Measurements of exhaled tidal volume, mask-to-face fit (leakage of mask), supraglottic obstruction, and the operator's effort were all inferior using the esophageal obturator airway. No consistent peak airway pressure could be obtained with the esophageal obturator airway. Placement of the device was difficult in three of ten patients, and two of ten had inadvertent tracheal intubations. Edentulous patients were difficult to impossible to ventilate using the esophageal obturator airway.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Anesthesia, General
  • Humans
  • Intubation, Intratracheal
  • Masks
  • Respiration, Artificial / instrumentation
  • Respiration, Artificial / methods*
  • Surgical Procedures, Operative