The Role of Flexible Bronchoscopy

  • David B. Glick


Over the last 45 years flexible bronchoscopy has become the “gold standard” for managing the expected and unexpected difficult airway [1, 2]. Unlike rigid laryngoscopy, intubation using a flexible bronchoscope does not require that an unobstructed straight view from the upper incisors to the larynx be created for intubation. Thus, patients with limited oral apertures, a mobile cervical spine, upper airway abnormalities (tumors, lingual tonsils, etc.), and redundant pharyngeal tissue are some of the classes of difficult airways that are better managed with fiberoptic intubations than with classic direct laryngoscopy.


Laryngeal Mask Airway Insertion Tube Fiberoptic Bronchoscopy Flexible Bronchoscope Arytenoid Cartilage 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


  1. 1.
    Ovassapian A, Dykes MHM. The role of fiberoptic endoscopy in airway management. Semin Anesth. 1987;6:93.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Heidegger T. Fiberoptic intubation. N Engl J Med. 2011;364:e42.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Murphy P. A fibre-optic endoscope used for nasal intubation. Anaesthesia. 1967;22:489–91.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Lee SC. Improvement of gas exchange by apneic oxygenation with nasal prong during fiberoptic intubation in fully relaxed patients. J Korean Med Sci. 1998;13:582–6.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Davis NJ. A new fiberoptic laryngoscope for nasal intubation. Anesth Analg. 1973;52:807–8.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Johnson C, Hunter J, Ho E, Bruff C. Fiberoptic intubation facilitated by a rigid laryngoscope. Anesth Analg. 1991;72:714.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Lechman MJ, Donahoo JS, MacVaugh III H. Endotracheal intubation using percutaneous retrograde guidewire insertion followed by antegrade fiberoptic bronchoscopy. Crit Care Med. 1986;14:589–90.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Benumof JL. Use of the laryngeal mask airway to facilitate fiberscope-aided tracheal intubation. Anesth Analg. 1992;74:313–5.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Chadd GD, Walford AJ, Crane DL. The 3.5/4.5 modification for fiberscope-guided tracheal intubation using the laryngeal mask airway. Anesth Analg. 1992;75:307–8.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Prakash PS, Pandia MP. A complication associated with the use of a drug injection catheter through a fiberscope. Anesthesiology. 2008;108:173.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Anesthesia & Critical CareUniversity of Chicago HospitalsChicagoUSA

Personalised recommendations