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Screening and Tests for Tracheomalacia

Screening for tracheomalacia begins with a physical examination to confirm the breathing symptoms. The doctor may order an X-ray to rule out other problems and to show how much the trachea narrows when the child breathes in.

How Is Tracheomalacia Diagnosed?

For a definitive diagnosis of tracheomalacia, the otolaryngologist may perform a larngoscopy. Using a small camera, the doctor views the airway structure and can determine the severity of the condition.

Other tests for tracheomalacia include:

  • Airway fluoroscopy using X-rays to create real-time images of breathing
  • Barium swallow – drinking barium to enhance X-ray images
  • Bronchoscopy – inserting a camera into the throat to view the airways and lungs
  • CT (computed tomography) scan to create very detailed images of the throat
  • Lung function tests measuring capacity and level of oxygen delivered to the blood
  • Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to view the trachea while breathing

Locations for Tracheomalacia