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Journal of Obstrectic Anaesthesia and Critical Care
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Year : 2021  |  Volume : 11  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 90-95

Airway changes before & after delivery-does labour has any effect on the modified mallampati score?

Department of Anesthesia and Intensive Care, VMMC and Safdarjung Hospital, New Delhi, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Meenakshi Kumar
A 224, Sector -31, Noida - 201 301, Uttar Pradesh
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/joacc.JOACC_89_20

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Background: Changes in modified mallampati grade occur with the progress of pregnancy, labor, and delivery due to various reasons. This could lead to unanticipated difficulties in airway management, especially if the parturient were to undergo a surgical procedure in the postpartum period. Our study aimed to evaluate the change in airway parameters after delivery in parturient undergoing lower segment cesarean section (LSCS) under spinal anesthesia. Materials and Methods: This study was conducted at Vardhaman Mahavir (VMMC) and Safdarjung Hospital over a period of 18 months. A total of 160 patients posted for either elective or emergency cesarean section under spinal anesthesia were enrolled in the study (80 in each group). Airway parameters including modified mallampati grade (MMPG) were measured at various time intervals – before cesarean section (T1) and 2 h (T2), 6 h (T3), 24 h (T4), 48 h (T5), and 72 h (T6) after delivery and analyzed statistically. Results: Changes in MMPG occurred in 71.25% of cases in the emergency group as compared with 40% of cases in the elective group (P = 0.0001). The mean MMPG was significantly higher from 2 h up to 72 h after LSCS in the emergency group (having more patients in active labor). (P = 0.0001). Maximum changes in MMPG occurred 6 h after delivery in both groups. Normalization of MMPG to its precesarean value occurred earlier in elective patients (P = 0.0005). An association was found between the duration of labor and normalization of changes in MMPG to its preoperative value (P = 0.023). Conclusion: Airway changes in pregnant women are seen to worsen after emergency LSCS under spinal anesthesia and are affected by prolonged labor. Therefore, the maternal airway should be reassessed after the delivery of the baby, for any surgical procedure thereafter.

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