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Background: Fiberoptic intubation (FOI) is considered a beneficial modality used to intubate life-threatening airway patients.
This study aims at assessing the effectiveness of shortened uncuffed endotracheal tube as a nasopharyngeal airway during FOI.
Methods: Between January 2019 and March 2021, this prospective randomized controlled trial has enrolled 62 adult patients
(56 males and 6 females) with normal airways scheduled for elective oral FOI classified American Society of Anesthesiologists
(ASA I-III), their age ranged 20-60 years. The patients were randomized into two equal groups (31 per each); in group I, FOI
was carried using lingual traction, and in group II, FOI was carried out with lingual traction plus a shortened uncuffed endotracheal
tube as a modified nasopharyngeal airway to maintain oxygenation. The time taken to successful tracheal intubation and
other technical parameters have been measured. The heart rate (HR), mean arterial pressure (MAP), oxygen saturation (SpO2),
end-tidal carbon dioxide (EtCO2), and any associated complications have been measured.
Results: During insertion of the scope, the SpO2 was significantly decreased in group I (92.55 ± 7.94) compared to group II
(97.42 ± 6.34), p=0.009. The heart rate, MAP, and EtCO2 were found to be insignificantly different in both groups (p>0.05).
The time needed for intubation in group I (2.78±0.98 min) was prolonged compared with group II (1.95±1.02 min) p =0.002.
The number of attempts was comparable in both groups, while the number of successful intubations from the 1st attempt was
12 (39%) compared to 18 (58%) in groups I and II respectively, p=0.36. The overall success rate by juniors was 71% in group I
compared to 84% in group II, p=0.66 with a lower incidence of using rescue oxygen and other facilitating maneuvers.
Conclusions: The modified nasopharyngeal airway is a useful modality to facilitate oral FOI by anesthesia resident trainees.
Keywords: Nasopharyngeal airway; Endotracheal tube; Training of FOI.