Background: Handling neonates with postnatal respiratory failure due to congenital airway malformations implies knowledge about emergency management of unexpected difficult airway. In these stressful situations both technical and communication skills of the caretakers are essential.
Case presentation: Two cases with prenatally unknown tracheal agenesis are reported.
Conclusion: In the presented cases, airway malformation and subsequent difficulties upon endotracheal intubation were not adequately communicated between caretakers. We discuss the aspects of culture, communication, and capnography.