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Saudi J Anaesth. 2016 Apr-Jun;10(2):218-27. doi: 10.4103/1658-354X.168804.

Videolaryngoscopes for placement of double lumen tubes: Is it time to say goodbye to direct view?

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Department of Anesthesiology, University of Dammam, Dammam, Al Khubar 31952, Saudi Arabia.


The advances in thoracic procedures require optimum lung separation to provide adequate room for surgical access. This can be achieved using either a double-lumen tube (DLT) or a bronchial blocker (BB). Most thoracic anesthesiologists prefer the use of DLT. However, lung separation in patients with potential difficult airway can be achieved using either BB through a single lumen tube or placement of a DLT over a tube exchanger or a fiberoptic bronchoscope. Numerous videolaryngoscopes (VL) have been introduced offering both optical and video options to visualize the glottis. Many studies reported improved glottis visualization and easier DLT intubation in patients with normal and potential difficult airway. However, these studies have a wide diversity of outcomes, which may be attributed to the differences in their designs and the prior experience of the operators in using the different devices. In the present review, we present the main outcomes of the available publications, which have addressed the use of VL-guided DLT intubation. Currently, there is enough evidence supporting using VL for DLT intubation in patients with predicted and unanticipated difficult airway. In conclusion, the use of VL could offer an effective method of DLT placement for lung separation in patients with the potential difficult airway.


Channeled videolaryngoscopes; GlideScope®; McGrath®; double lumen tube; video-stylets; videolaryngoscopes

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