Success rates of blind orotracheal intubation using a transillumination technique with a lighted stylet

David G. Ellis, Ronald D. Stewart, Richard M. Kaplan, Andrew Jakymec, Judith A. Freeman, Achiel Bleyaert

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

33 Scopus citations


The technique of guided orotracheal intubation using a lighted stylet depends on the transillumination of the soft tissues of the neck to direct the tube through the glottis and into the trachea. We conducted an operating room study of this technique, recording success rates and intubation times of 50 patients undergoing elective surgery. All patients were intubated successfully, 35 of 50 (70%) on the first attempt, 12 of 15 (80%) on the second attempt, and three of three (100%) on the third attempt. The average time for intubation was 37 seconds. A new design of the lighted stylet method resulted from the experience gained. Intubator training and experience influenced initial success rates, and the cadaver laboratory was of particular value in teaching the technique.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)138-142
Number of pages5
JournalAnnals of emergency medicine
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1986



  • blind
  • intubation
  • lighted
  • orotracheal

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Emergency Medicine

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