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Critical education for

the modern emergency nurse

OUTLINE & NOTES (pdf file)

"Difficult" airways are more of a concept than a defined occurrence.  On any given day, any airway could represent a convergence of factors that leads to a failed airway and poor patient outcome.  This presentation will explore some of the difficulties that can present, as well as develop strategies to overcome them.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Review the concepts of difficult airways
  • Discuss the need for an intubation/RSI plan
  • Discuss/demonstrate various methods of managing a "difficult"/failed airway
  • Discuss the human factors that enhance/impair airway management


Video: The Elaine Bromiley Case

This re-enacted, real-time video fundamentally changed how I approached the concept of difficult airways, and was the reason for developing RSI 201.  This is a must-watch for anyone involved in emergent airway management.

More on the Bromiley case via EMCrit

Video: Surgical Cricothyrotomy

Video: Retrograde Intubation

Stuart Marshall on Human Factors in Airway Management

Alfred ICU Intubation Checklist