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Pediatrics. 1991 Jun;87(6):847-53.

Review of intubation in severe laryngotracheobronchitis.

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Intensive Care Unit, Children's Hospital, Camperdown, Sydney, Australia.


Of 208 children who required relief of severe airway obstruction due to laryngotracheobronchitis by an artificial airway (nasotracheal intubation or tracheostomy) during a 10-year-period, 181 (87%) were intubated and later extubated. Twenty-seven children (13%) had tracheostomies performed. The tracheostomies were for severe subglottic narrowing precluding the passage of an adequate size endotracheal tube in 10 children, and for severe endotracheal tube trauma in 17 children. Five children developed acquired subglottic stenosis (2.4% of 208) and 1 of these has a retained tracheostomy. One child died of cardiac disease. The remaining 202 children had no long-term complications of laryngotracheobronchitis, intubation, or tracheostomy. It is concluded that nasotracheal intubation is a satisfactory artificial airway for laryngotracheobronchitis. Endoscopic evaluation in a selected group of these children will identify those with significant intubation trauma or severe subglottic narrowing in whom continued intubation may cause permanent subglottic damage. The low incidence of acquired subglottic stenosis in this series supports the practice of selective endoscopy and tracheostomy.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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