What is it about?

Difficult airway management is closely related to the safety and quality of medical care. However, the low incidence of correct prediction of difficult airway in clinical screening tests presents physicians with a dilemma. This study aims to examine changes in airway dimensions before and after induction of general anaesthesia, to explore whether it could provide useful information regarding the specific anatomic changes occurring which may cause difficult airways.

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Why is it important?

No previous study has used ultrasound to investigate upper airway changes following anaesthetic induction. The study will explore new indicators that can provide insight into the theoretical basis for dynamic risk assessment of difficult airways. The finding can provide information useful for evaluating the difference between difficult and normal airways.


Writing this article is a great pleasure, because it is a collaborative work of co-authors. It is a really enjoyable learning experience, through which I draw valuable knowledge from the comments of reviewers.

Wuhua Ma
The First Affiliated Hospital of Guangzhou University of Chinese Medicine, Guangzhou, China

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Changes in the upper airway following induction of anaesthesia: a prospective observational study protocol to determine the use of ultrasound in the assessment of a difficult airway in China, BMJ Open, July 2019, BMJ, DOI: 10.1136/bmjopen-2019-029782.
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