Stroke causes significant mortality and morbidity. The clinical value of the nasopharyngeal snorkel was investigated in stroke patients with disorders of consciousness. A total of 155 stroke patients were randomly divided into two groups: a nasopharyngeal snorkel was used in the treatment group (n=78) and an oropharyngeal snorkel was used in the control group (n=77). The PaO2 and PCO2 of both groups improved 30 minutes after placement of the nasopharyngeal or oropharyngeal snorkel, with a reduction of systolic blood pressure (SBP), diastolic blood pressure (DBP), and heart rate (HR). The improvements in PCO2 was significant in the nasopharyngeal snorkel group (40.9 ± 3.3) compared with oropharyngeal snorkel group (47.8 ± 5.3) (P<0.05). Tracheal intubation was carried out in 15 (19.2%) patients in the nasopharyngeal snorkel group compared with 31 (40.3%) patients in the oropharyngeal snorkel group. Pulmonary infection occurred in 11 (14.1%) patients in the nasopharyngeal snorkel group and 19 (24.7%) patients in the oropharyngeal snorkel group. The incidence of tracheal intubation and pulmonary infection were significantly lower in the nasopharyngeal group (P<0.05). The placement of a nasopharyngeal snorkel was an effective treatment for upper airway obstruction in stroke patients.