Look for patients at increased risk for airway obstruction or who might be difficult to intubate in an emergency.

  • Significant airway history
  • Abnormal airway exam

Significant Airway History

  • Known difficult intubation in the past
  • Significant snoring
  • Sleep apnea
  • Conditions limiting neck mobility
  • Upper respiratory infections
  • Down's Syndrome
  • Prior surgery or radiation therapy affecting airway structures

Normal Airway Examination

  • Opens mouth normally
  • Able to visualize at least part of the uvula and tonsillar pillars
  • Normal chin length
  • Normal neck flexion and extension without pain/paresthesias