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Paramedic: Airway Management

Airway management and ventilation are the highest priorities in patient management. While this statement may seem like an oversimplification, few situations more rapidly cause disability and death than airway and breathing compromise. Maintaining the airway and ensuring breathing are almost always the very first considerations when treating emergency patients. Paramedic: Airway Management is a comprehensive stand-alone program, which meets and exceeds the airway management objectives as outlined in the 1998 U.S. Department of Transportation Paramedic National Standard Curriculum.

To view a sample chapter from Paramedic: Airway Management, please visit this web page.

Paramedic: Airway Management, written by a paramedic for paramedics, uses a case-based approach to help future paramedics develop analytical skills, while learning the content and skills of airway management.

Features & Benefits

Progressive Case Studies - Each chapter opens with a case study that introduces a patient and follows the case from dispatch to delivery at the emergency room.  The case progressively gets more detailed as new material is presented to the reader.  Answers and rationales for the case study appear in the end of chapter activities.

Skill Drills - Skill Drills present step-by-step explanations with a visual summary of key skills and procedures to enhance the students' comprehension.

Special Needs Boxes - This feature serves to highlight specific concerns and procedures for particular segments of the population, like the elderly and/or pediatric patient.

Paramedic Safety - This feature provides advice on how to stay safe in the field.

Teamwork Tips - This feature offers practical advice and information on teamwork and communication with other healthcare providers.

Documentation Tips - This feature provides advice on how to document patient care to prevent problems down the road.

End of Chapter Activities include:

  • Chapter Summary
  • Key Terms
  • Case Studies
  • Online Resources

Applicable Courses


Review of all basic level skills and an introduction to advanced skills of the paramedic. Topics include roles and responsibilities, stress management, communications and medical/legal/ethical issues. This course provides an introduction to clinical pre-hospital pharmacology, IV access and advanced airway management techniques. Lab work involves IV access techniques, endotracheal intubation, computing dosages, preparing medications for administration and practice in all administrative techniques. Skills are taught/practiced in the laboratory/hospital/field setting. Students must satisfactorily perform all practical skills to successfully complete the course.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1:   Introduction to Emergency Airway Management and Ventilation
Chapter 2:   Clinical Airway Anatomy
Chapter 3:   Physiology
Chapter 4:   Evaluating Airway Patency and Ventilatory Efficiency
Chapter 5:   Supplemental Oxygen Therapy
Chapter 6:   Basic Airway Management Techniques
Chapter 7:   Positive Pressure Ventilation
Chapter 8:   Techniques of Positive Pressure Ventilation
Chapter 9:   Endotracheal Intubation
Chapter 10: Techniques of Endotracheal Intubation
Chapter 11: Postintubation Procedures
Chapter 12: Nonsurgical Alternatives to Intubation
Chapter 13: Pharmacological Aids in Emergency Intubation
Chapter 14: Pediatric Airway Management
Chapter 15: Surgical and Pseudo-surgical Airways
Appendix:    Special Situations

American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS)

With more than 38,000 members, the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons ( or, is the premier not-for-profit organization that provides education programs for orthopaedic surgeons and allied health professionals, champions the interests of patients and advances the highest quality of musculoskeletal health. Orthopaedic surgeons and the Academy are the authoritative sources of information for patients and the general public on musculoskeletal conditions, treatments and related issues.

More than one in four Americans have bone or joint health problems, making them the greatest cause of lost work days in the U.S. When orthopaedic surgeons restore mobility and reduce pain, they help people get back to work and to independent, productive lives. Orthopaedic surgeons keep this “Nation in Motion.” To learn more about A Nation in Motion campaign, or to read hundreds of patient stories or to submit your own story, visit

Additional Titles by this Author

Gregg Margolis, MS, NREMT-P

  • "Paramedic: Airway Management, by Gregg S. Margolis, MS, NREMT-P, would be a welcome addition to any EMS provider’s bookcase.  This comprehensive, stand-alone text combines case studies with focused findings and break-out boxes containing important points related to documentation and safety.  It meets and exceeds the airway management objectives outlined in the 1998 U.S. Department of Transportation Paramedic National Standard Curriculum."

    From the Journal of Emergency Medical Services
    March 2004 Vol. 29 No. 3 Page 140

    Book Review

    AAOS: Paramedic:  Airway Management
    By Gregg S. Margolis, MS, NREMT-P: Jones and Bartlett Publishers, 2004

    Joining an increasing popular list of advanced level textbooks focused on specific areas of paramedic practice is the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) Paramedic: Airway Management text, written by well-known EMS educator Gregg Margolis.

    The text provides a comprehensive, nicely written approach to both the basic and advanced aspects of managing the broad spectrum of airway abnormalities encountered in the unpredictable field environment. The flow of the text is simple to follow and takes the reader down a logical path, similar to that encountered in field practice. The illustrations are clear, and the photographs are a good mix of “real patients” and simulated situations designed to illustrate skills. (Why is it as EMS providers, we make it a point to pick out what’s “real”?)

    The author uses several interesting tools to effectively bridge the gap between an academic presentation of the science and a practical, real-world approach to patient-care. The first is a series of case-studies that build upon themselves with each successive presentation, allowing the reader to think through the changing dynamics of an evolving patient presentation. This approach not only reinforces the content discussed, but also challenges the reader to work through the ever-elusive process of developing solid clinical decision-making skills.

    The case presentation scenarios contain just the right mix of “life in the streets” descriptions and focused findings. The cases also reinforce good medical practice unrelated to airway management, but essential to street medicine (“…as you pull the jump bag, oxygen kit and AED out of the rig…).

    Finally, the text uses several break-out boxes that focus on important points related to documentation and safety. Margolis’ Paramedic: Airway Management is a solid, well-written soup-to-nuts textbook that covers the science of airway management in a fashion that also focuses on the art of developing a comprehensive, practical approaching in the unpredictable world of out-of-hospital medicine.

    By Edward M. Racht, MD
    Medical Director, Austin/Travis County EMS Department
    Austin, Texas

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Companion Web site


The following technology resources are available at

  • Online Chapter Pretests: Prepare students for training with instant results and feedback on incorrect answers.
  • Vocabulary Explorer: Interactive online glossary to expand student's medical vocabulary.
  • Animated Flashcards: Review vital vocabulary and key concepts.
  • Anatomy Review: Interactive anatomic figure labeling.

The following instructor resources are available to qualified instructors for download

ISBN-13: 9781449642594

Lecture Outline
Slides in PowerPoint Format