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.
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