NYMC Faculty Publications

A Novel Grading System for Supraglottic Stenosis Based on Morphology and Functional Status

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The Laryngoscope

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OBJECTIVE: Currently, no classification system exists to grade the severity of supraglottic stenosis. The aim of this investigation was to (1) develop a novel grading system for supraglottic stenosis that can both enhance communication between providers and relay information about patient functional status and (2) determine the reliability of the grading system. METHODS: A retrospective analysis of patients with supraglottic stenosis at three institutions from 2010-2021 was conducted. After demographic data were collected, two focus group meetings of five laryngologists were held to develop a grading system based on functional status and morphology of stenosis seen on laryngoscopy. Three laryngologists then used the grading system to rate 20 case examples of supraglottic stenosis. Quadratic-weighted kappa coefficients were calculated to assess inter-rater and intra-rater reliabilities of the novel grading system. RESULTS: Twenty-eight patients were included. Epiglottic and arytenoid fixation were morphological features associated with worse functional outcomes such as requiring a G-tube or a tracheostomy, respectively. Inter-rater reliability was substantial to almost perfect (Kw = 0.79-0.81) and intra-rater reliability was almost perfect for all raters (0.88-1.0) when using the novel grading system. CONCLUSION: A grading system for supraglottic stenosis has been proposed with strong inter-rater and intra-rater reliabilities. The proposed system has the advantage of being descriptive of both patient functionality and morphology of the stenosis. LEVEL OF EVIDENCE: 3-According to the Oxford Center for Evidence-Based Medicine 2011 level of evidence guidelines, this non-randomized retrospective cohort study is classified as level 3 evidence Laryngoscope, 133:1442-1447, 2023.