Dr. Elena Fernandez

/ Dr. Elena Fernandez

Dr Elena Fernandez is a consultant paediatric anaesthetist at Great Ormond Street Hospital where she is college tutor and airway lead. She specialises in anaesthesia for ENT, maxillo-facial and neurosurgery. She organises and teaches at the GOSH Paediatric Difficult Airway course as well as regular teaching sessions for anaesthetic trainees, consultants and other health professionals. Other interests include Quality Improvement and outcome measures in anaesthesia.

’Paediatric Difficult Airway’, Elena Fernandez. Abstract.

Compared to adults, children have a lower incidence of difficult airway and this has implications for our training and retention of skills. Fortunately, in the majority of children we will be able to anticipate their potential difficult airway by the presence of anatomical abnormalities and/or associated syndromes and this will allow us to prepare appropriately.

A recently published multicentre study of 13 north American paediatric hospitals described the management of over a thousand children with difficult airway. It showed that these children suffer a high rate of complications (20% overall and 2% of cardiac arrest). I will aim to describe some strategies to help us manage these children safely and effectively.

Fiadjoe JE, Nishisaki A, Jagannathan N et al. Airway management complications in children with difficult tracheal intubation from the Pediatric Difficult Intubation (PeDI) registry: a prospective cohort analysis. Lancet Respir Med 2016; 4: 37–48