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Year : 2019  |  Volume : 27  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 101-103

Focused ultrasound assists in diagnosis and management of difficult airway in Ludwig's angina

1 Department of Emergency Medicine, National Defense Medical Center, Tri-Service General Hospital, Taipei, Taiwan
2 Department of Emergency, Wan Fang Hospital; Graduate Institute of Clinical Medicine, College of Medicine; Department of Emergency, School of Medicine, College of Medicine, Taipei Medical University, Taipei, Taiwan

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Yuan-Pin Hsu
Department of Emergency, Wan Fang Hospital, Taipei Medical University, No. 111, Sec. 3, Xinglong Road, Wenshan District, Taipei City 116
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/JMU.JMU_95_18

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Ludwig's angina is a rapidly progressive and life-threatening medical emergency. The mortality rate is about 8%. Management of the difficult airway in Ludwig's angina has been challenging for clinical physicians. We reported an otherwise healthy 49-year-old female, who visited our emergency department with progressive swelling of her chin, drooling, and dyspnea. Ludwig's angina with impending airway compromise was promptly identified. The precise anatomy of the distorted neck was accessed using ultrasound as an adjunct. Emergent tracheostomy was then established successfully within minutes. Physicians should consider using ultrasound as an adjunct to define anatomy before performing emergent surgical airways.

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