Introduction with a Case
Difficult laryngoscopy due to a protruding mustache
Difficult mask ventilation
|A transparent Tegaderm dressing cover may be placed over the beard to improve mask seal. A hole is cut for the mouth, but the dressing should be allowed to adhere to the lips. Image from Johnson 1999.|
Difficulty securing the endotracheal tube
Multiple dimensions of difficulty
Facial hair management plan
- A protuberant mustache may block your line-of-sight to the vocal cords when performing direct laryngoscopy.
- A beard may render mask ventilation challenging.
- Prominent facial hair can make it difficult to secure the endotracheal tube, possibly increasing risk of self-extubation.
- Quickly removing facial hair with electronic clippers before intubation is one approach to improve the safety of emergency airway management.
- Once the patient has recovered from ICU and left the hospital, he may re-grow his facial hair next Movember to increase awareness of Men's health.