Cuffed cricothyrotomy cannula


Cuffed cricothyrotomy cannulas are usually supplied as a kit, which will contain the other items needed to access the airway with a Seldinger technique, such as a smaller sharp metal cannula, a guide wire, and some type of dilator. Here we describe the kit used at UCSF.

Similar sets are available from other suppliers and work based on the same principle.

This particular set contains:

  • two 18 G cannulas of different lengths
  • a 5 ml syringe
  • a scalpel with a size 15 blade
  • a guide wire which is soft-tipped at one end
  • the actual cuffed cricothyrotomy cannula with an inner diameter of 5 mm and an outer diameter of 7.2 mm
  • an obturator/ dilator to be placed inside the cannula
  • a neck tie to secure the cannula once placed

Contents of the kit unpacked; note that the obturator/ dilator should always stay inside the cricothyrotomy cannula until the device has been successfully placed; it was removed in this picture for illustrative purposes only

Note that the scalpel blade supplied with the kit is relatively smaller than the diameter of the cannula


The indications for using this device and the technique to place it is described here.