oa Southern African Journal of Anaesthesia and Analgesia - Intubation for short procedures : refresher course

Volume 17, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 2220-1181
  • E-ISSN: 2220-1173



A challenge for any anaesthetist is intubating a patient for short procedures that last 10 or 15 minutes during a busy list. While most day-case surgery can now be performed using a pharyngeal airway device, certain procedures, such as dental work, laparoscopy, microsurgery, open-eye surgery, ENT and some paediatric procedures, require intubation. Unfortunately, most of the literature focuses on how to achieve a successful, rapid intubation under optimal conditions, without any regard for needing to extubate a spontaneously breathing, awake patient within a few minutes of putting the tube in. Many techniques have been described, all of which are successful in the hands of the person describing the technique, but for everyone else, result in either a coughing, bucking, recently intubated patient, or an apnoeic patient needing half an hour's ventilation post-surgery.

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