Pediatric Airway Management: A Step-by-Step Guide

It’s very common, and perfectly understandable, for providers who rarely care for children to be anxious when faced with a small child’s airway. This is true even if they are comfortable with adult airway management. From infants to toddlers to teenagers, the anatomy and physiology of the child is continuously changing. Managing the airway of a premature infant requires a slightly different technique than managing the airway of an older infant, a toddler, a child and a teenager. Not big differences, but enough to make care of the pediatric airway more challenging, especially for providers who care for children infrequently.

My goal for this book is to demystify basic pediatric airway management. I want to give you the skills you need to recognize when a child is in trouble and act quickly to safeguard that child, including helping them breathe if necessary.

Children are not miniature adults: in many ways normal pediatric anatomy and physiology make children more vulnerable to hypoxia, respiratory distress, and respiratory failure. Compared to adults, the leading cause of preventable death in pediatric emergencies – both medical and trauma – is failure to adequately manage the airway. Pediatric respiratory events carry a higher mortality than adult events. Fortunately, most children have easily managed airways. If you understand the differences, taking care of the typical pediatric airway is not difficult.

This book gives you step by step instructions on basic airway management guided by 267 illustrations and photos, plus over an hour of on-line video clips. These free video clips provide hours of footage of actual patients undergoing real surgical procedures, manikin demonstrations, and animations. You may preview the video clips by clicking here.

Is Pediatric Airway Management: A Step-By-Step Guide For You?

Yes, if you:

  • care for children in either a clinic, prehospital, or hospital setting
  • want to learn the differences in pediatric and adult anatomy and physiology
  • want to learn why the child’s anatomy and physiology predispose to airway obstruction and respiratory failure
  • want to learn how to recognize the signs of pediatric respiratory distress or failure
  • want to be able to open an airway and assist ventilation, for all ages
  • want to improve your first pass success with intubation
  • want to understand how neonatal anatomy and physiology affect neonatal resuscitation
  • want to approach the difficult airway or intubation with new techniques
  • want a tool to better teach these skills to your students

What’s In This Book?

Practical, illustrated step by step information, with on-line video, on:

  • airway anatomy, including differences between the baby, the child, and the adult
  • age related differences in how pediatric physiology predisposes the child to a higher risk of airway obstruction and respiratory failure
  • how to assess respiratory status, including recognizing airway obstruction
  • how to open the airway, with age specific tips
  • tips and tricks on how to manually ventilate any age patient
  • how to assess and intubate any age patient
  • tips and tricks for managing difficult intubation
  • basic equipment and how to use it
  • intubation techniques, including pediatric and nasal intubations
  • avoiding common errors
  • strategies for difficult intubations
  • use of muscles relaxants for rapid sequence induction (RSI)
  • techniques for use of the Glidescope, and the LMA
  • complications

Why Is Pediatric Airway Management The Best Pediatric Airway Management Training Book?

  • Because it’s packed with step-by-step instructions. Dr. Whitten is a pediatric anesthesiologist and she has personally taught hundreds of people how to intubate. She clearly knows what the student needs to learn to master the craft.
  • Because it teaches why children are different in easy to understand terms. The anatomy and physiology of babies and young children predisposes to airway obstruction and respiratory failure. Understanding why a patient is at risk helps you more effectively recognize the patient in trouble and manage the problem.
  • Because it fills a need. Historically, teaching airway management and intubation was done with one-on-one mentoring. Now many are expected to master these skills in an hour-long class. This book tries to bridge that gap.
  • Because it’s practical. This book breaks down each skill into basic steps and describes exactly what the learner will experience in real life, making it easier for the student to apply that information.
  • Because it explains the why behind each step. We all remember better and learn faster if we know why we are doing what we’re doing, not just memorizing rote steps. Pediatric Airway Management provides that “why”
  • Because it was also written to provide a teaching tool.  Instructors have used the first book in this series, Anyone Can Intubate, 5th edition, for decades to teach airway management and intubation to nurses, paramedics, respiratory therapists, nurse anesthetists, and residents. This book continues that tradition of providing practical, easy to understand information and techniques.