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Case Reports in Anesthesiology
Volume 2011, Article ID 878910, 4 pages
Case Report

Laryngeal Radiation Fibrosis: A Case of Failed Awake Flexible Fibreoptic Intubation

1Department of Anaesthesiology, VU University Medical Center, 1081 HV Amsterdam, The Netherlands
2Department of Radiotherapy, Antoni van Leeuwenhoek Hospital-The Netherlands Cancer Institute, 1066 CX Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Received 2 November 2011; Accepted 28 November 2011

Academic Editor: E. W. Nielsen

Copyright © 2011 Johannes M. Huitink and Lambert Zijp. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Awake fibreoptic intubation is accepted as the gold standard for intubation of patients with an anticipated difficult airway. Radiation fibrosis may cause difficulties during the intubation procedure. We present an unusual severe case of radiation induced changes to the larynx, with limited clinical symptoms, that caused failure of the fibreoptic intubation technique. A review of the known literature on radiation fibrosis and airway management is presented.