6: Is the sniffing position optimal for viewing the glottic opening?


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By David Hao, MD, David Hao, and MD. Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.

We investigate the claim that the sniffing position aligns the "axes" and is the optimal position for viewing the glottic opening.

Our guest is Dr. Keith Baker, Vice Chair for Education and a thoracic anesthesiologist at the Massachusetts General Hospital.

Full show notes available at depthofanesthesia.com.

Connect with us @DepthAnesthesia on Twitter or depthofanesthesia@gmail.com.

Thanks for listening! Please rate us on iTunes and share with your colleagues.

Music by Stephen Campbell, MD.



El-Orbany M.I., Getachew Y.B., Joseph N.J., Salem M.R., and Friedman M.: Head elevation improves laryngeal exposure with direct laryngoscopy. J Clin Anesth 2015; 27: pp. 153-158

Frédéric Adnet, Christophe Baillard, Stephen W. Borron, Christophe Denantes, Laurent Lefebvre, Michel Galinski, Carmen Martinez, Michel Cupa, Frédéric Lapostolle; Randomized Study Comparing the “Sniffing Position” with Simple Head Extension for Laryngoscopic View in Elective Surgery Patients. Anesthesiology 2001;95(4):836-841.

Frédéric Adnet, Stephen W. Borron, Jean Luc Dumas, Frédéric Lapostolle, Michel Cupa, Claude Lapandry; Study of the “Sniffing Position” by Magnetic Resonance Imaging. Anesthesiology 2001;94(1):83-86.

Hochman II, Zeitels SM, Heaton JT. Analysis of the forces and position required for direct laryngoscopic exposure of the anterior vocal cords. Ann Otol Rhino Laryngol 1999; 108

Levitan R.M., Mechem C.C., Ochroch E.A., et al: Head-elevated laryngoscopy position: improving laryngeal exposure during laryngoscopy by increasing head elevation. Ann Emerg Med 2003; 41: pp. 322-330


By listening to this podcast, you agree not to use information as medical advice to treat any medical condition in either yourself or others, including but not limited to patients that you are treating. Opinions expressed are solely those of the host and guests and do not express the views or opinions of Massachusetts General Hospital.

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