Difficult Airway Management in Pediatric with a Large Cystic Hygroma Colli Undergoing One-Stage Excision Surgery

Mahendratama Purnama Adhi, Hery Poerwosusanta


Background: A large cystic hygroma colli is a complicating factor in airway management in pediatric. Proper preparation, planning, and anticipation can reduce the risk of complications, morbidity, and mortality during difficult airway management. The fundamental principle of difficult airway management is to maintain adequate oxygenation and avoid hypoxemia by maintaining spontaneous ventilation.

Case: A 22-month-old girl, weighing 9 kg, diagnosed with a large cystic hygroma colli who underwent single-stage excision surgery. Cystic hygroma was experienced since birth and with age, the cysts enlarge to a size of 25 x 17 x 12 cm which extends towards the face and shoulders. The patient did not experience stridor and symptoms of airway obstruction. The chest x-ray reveals no expansion of the cyst into the chest cavity and showed minimal tracheal deviation to the right. The difficult airway management was accomplished while maintaining the patient's spontaneous breathing. Sedation and analgesia obtained with intravenous administration of dexmedetomidine, ketamine, and nebulized lidocaine. A video laryngoscope is used to facilitate intubation. Awake extubation was performed after confirming that there was no risk of complications of laryngeal edema, laryngeal nerve injury, and tracheomalacia using a cuff-leak test.

Conclusion: Maintaining spontaneous breathing, optimal levels of sedation and analgesia by administering dexmedetomidine, ketamine, and nebulizing lidocaine, and the use of a video laryngoscope can provide successful management of difficult airways due to a large cystic hygroma colli in pediatric patients.


difficult airway management; pediatric; cystic hygroma colli; dexmedetomidine; ketamine.

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.21776/ub.jap.2021.002.03.01


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