The Proseal™ laryngeal mask airway (PLMA™, Laryngeal Mask Company, UK) was designed to improve ventilatory characteristics and offer protection against regurgitation and gastric insufflation. The PLMA is a modified laryngeal mask airway with large ventral cuff, dorsal cuff and a drain tube. These modifications improve seal around glottis and enable better ventilatory characteristics. The drain tube prevents gastric distension and offers protection against aspiration. There were occasional problems, like failed insertion and inadequate ventilation, in placing PLMA™ using the classical digital technique. To overcome these problems, newer placement techniques like thumb insertion technique, introducer tool placement and gum elastic bougie (GEB)-aided placement were devised. We compared classical digital placement of PLMA™ with gum elastic bougie-aided technique in 60 anaesthetised adult patients (with 30 patients in each group) with respect to number of attempts to successful placement, effective airway time, airway trauma during insertion, postoperative airway morbidity and haemodynamic response to insertion. The number of attempts to successful placement, airway trauma during insertion and haemodynamic response to insertion were comparable among the two groups, while effective airway time and oropharyngeal leak pressure were significantly higher in bougie- guided insertion of PLMA. Postoperatively, sore throat was more frequent with digital technique while dysphagia was more frequent with bougie guided technique. Hence gum elastic bougie guided, laryngoscope aided insertion of PLMA is an excellent alternate to classical digital technique
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