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The ‘pitfalls’ of intubation: airway complications following tracheo-oesophageal fistula repair
  1. Ross J Langley1,
  2. Daniel Hufton2,
  3. Julie Freeman2,
  4. Michael Jackson3,
  5. Don S Urquhart1
  1. 1Department of Paediatric Respiratory & Sleep Medicine, Royal Hospital for Sick Children, Edinburgh, UK
  2. 2Department of Paediatric Intensive Care, Royal Hospital for Sick Children, Edinburgh, UK
  3. 3Department of Paediatric Radiology, Royal Hospital for Sick Children, Edinburgh, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr Donald S Urquhart, Department of Paediatric Respiratory & Sleep medicine, Royal Hospital for Sick Children, Edinburgh EH9 1LF, UK; don.urquhart{at}

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A 6-month-old girl, born at 34 weeks gestation, with a history of VACTERL, thoracoscopic repair of a tracheo-oesophageal fistula and oesophageal atresia was referred with a new oxygen requirement. She was admitted for further investigations, including bronchoscopy with bronchoalveolar lavage and oesophageal dilatation.

Flexible bronchoscopy demonstrated a deep blind-ending pit with associated tracheomalacia and distorted bronchial anatomy (figure 1).

Figure 1

Flexible bronchoscopy (2.8 mm scope) performed via laryngeal-mask airway. The larynx appeared normal with swollen and inflamed arytaenoids. Vocal cord movements …

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