Brazilian Journal of Anesthesiology
Brazilian Journal of Anesthesiology
Original Investigation

Obstructive sleep apnea in surgical patients and its relationship with difficult intubation: two years of experience from a single center

Volkan Ozen, Nurten Ozen

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Background and objectives
In this study, we aimed to determine the risk of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) in patients undergoing elective surgery and its relationship with difficult intubation (DI).

This prospective, descriptive cross-sectional study was conducted between December 2018 and February 2020 in the anesthesiology and reanimation service of a training and research hospital. The study included patients who were ASA I–II, 18 years of age and older who underwent elective surgery under general anesthesia. A form regarding the baseline characteristics of the participants as well as STOP-Bang score, Mallampati, and Cormack-Lehane classification was used to collect the data.

The study included 307 patients. It was determined that 64.2% of patients had a high risk of OSA. The presence of DI (determined by repeated attempts at intubation) was 28.6% in the high-risk OSA group, while there was no DI in the low-risk OSA group. A statistically significant difference was found between the groups in terms of OSA risk according to the presence of DI according to repeated attempts, Cormack-Lehane classification, and Mallampati classification (p <  0.001).

Due to the high rate of DI in patients with a high risk of OSA, the security of the airway in these patients is endangered. Early clinical recognition of OSA can help in designing a safer care plan.


Obstructive sleep apnea;  Difficult intubation;  STOP-Bang;  General anesthesia;  Elective surgery;  Preoperative period
6154aa06a9539557986b3562 rba Articles
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Braz J Anesthesiol

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