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Mucosal Erosion of the Cricoid Cartilage After the Use of an i-Gel Supraglottic Airway Device in a Patient with Diffuse Idiopathic Skeletal Hyperostosis

Schaer, Andreas C. MD*; Keel, Marius J. B. MD; Dubach, Patrick MD; Greif, Robert MD*; Luyet, Cédric MD*; Theiler, Lorenz MD*

A&A Case Reports:
doi: 10.1213/XAA.0000000000000049
Case Reports: Case Report

After standard hip arthroplasty, an 82-year-old patient with previously undiagnosed diffuse idiopathic skeletal hyperostosis of the cervical spine experienced life-threatening side effects after use of a supraglottic airway device (i-gel). Extensive mucosal erosion and denudation of the cricoid cartilage caused postoperative supraglottic swelling and prolonged respiratory failure requiring tracheostomy. In this case report, we highlight the importance of evaluating risk factors for failure of supraglottic airway devices.

Author Information

From the Departments of *Anesthesiology and Pain Therapy, Orthopedic and Trauma Surgery, and Otorhinolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery, Bern University Hospital and University of Bern, Bern, Switzerland.

Accepted for publication October 28, 2013.

Funding: No external funding.

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Address correspondence to Lorenz Theiler, MD, University Department of Anesthesiology and Pain Therapy, Bern University Hospital and University of Bern, Inselspital, CH-3010 Bern, Switzerland. Address e-mail to

© 2014 International Anesthesia Research Society

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