Surgical Airway Management

David R. Gens Cl.inical.Features

Specific Issues that Affect Evaluation and Treatment


Associated, Injuries

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Chapter References

Surgical airway management is an important skill for all medical personnel treating patients with potentially life-threatening airway emergencies. Up to 2 percent of emergency department intubations have been reported to result in a cricothyroidotomy, but the actual rate is certainly considerably lower. 1 It is probably underutilized as a technique.

The term cricothyroidotomy technically means vertically incising (splitting) both the cricoid and thyroid cartilages, and coniotomy means incising the cricothyroid (conic) ligament, which runs from the cricoid to the thyroid cartilage. Although coniotomy is the correct term for incising between these two cartilages, the term cricothyroidotomy is now commonly used to denote this procedure and is used throughout this chapter.

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