Fibreoptic endoscopy and intubation continues to be recommended in guidelines for the management of difficult airways. Since fibrescopes are unavailable within United Kingdom field hospitals, an alternative is needed. The Airtraq optical laryngoscope is a versatile, inexpensive, single-use option, which could readily fill this void. It is easy to use and provides a full view of the glottis when direct laryngoscopy has failed. Its introduction will reinforce existing difficult airway equipment and simplify the management of ‘can ventilate - can’t intubate’ patients.
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