Doctor insights on: Tracheostomy

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Dr. James Sidman
479 Doctors shared insights

Tracheostomy (Overview)

A tracheostomy is a surgical procedure to create an alternate airway by making an opening in the trachea (windpipe).


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Is the tracheostomy a risky thing to do?

Is the tracheostomy a risky thing to do?

Depends on airway: If securing the airway is difficult, due to mass or severe airway alteration, then it can be quite dangerous and need to be done emergently or without general anesthesia. If already intubated or with straightforward anatomy, shouldn't be a problem. Surgical risks include bleeding, infection, damage to neck structures. ...Read more

Dr. James Sidman
479 Doctors shared insights

Tracheostomy (Overview)

A tracheostomy is a surgical procedure to create an alternate airway by making an opening in the trachea (windpipe).


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Can a tracheostomy make it difficult to eat?

Can a tracheostomy make it difficult to eat?

Yes: Temporary swallowing dysfunction can be seen in patients with tracheostomy. Most facilities have a process to screen for this problem. Speech therapists are often consulted to assist with improved swallowing. ...Read more

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Explain to me the procedure of a tracheostomy?

Hole in trachea: This is a surgical procedure where an opening is made in the front of the neck into the trachea to make it easier and safer to help a patient breathe using a ventilator (breathing machine). Often, this comes after the patient has used a tube going in the mouth and into the trachea. A tracheostomy tube avoids the vocal cords and the easy-to-damage area below them, and so is safer long-term. ...Read more

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What do you have to do to take care of a tracheostomy?

What do you have to do to take care of a tracheostomy?

Keep it clean: Keep the area where the tube meets the skin clean, at times suctioning may be needed. Have the tube changed every 4 to 6 weeks. Watch for signs of infection. ...Read more

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What are the possible complications of living with a tracheostomy?

Many: The tracheostomy can have many problems, they can fall out, have granulumos, get infected, erode the airway cartilage, etc. But, if cared for appropriately by the patient and placed appropriately by the surgeon, they are very easy to handle. If one needs one they shouldn't let the potential problems dissuade them. They are live saving. ...Read more

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What are the differences between a crycothyrotomy and a tracheostomy?

Which part opened: To create air way. In emergency air way is created quickly by opening between thyroid and cricoid cartilages but in they tracheotomy area is dissected opening is made below second tracheal cartilage, takes more time need more skills but safe from developing tracheal stenosis. ...Read more

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What could you do if no secretions were obtained when you suctioned a tracheostomy?

What could you do if no secretions were obtained when you suctioned a tracheostomy?

Double check: Make sure suction working properly and catheter going where it is supposed to. Also if patient is dehydrated secretions may become tenacious and or minimal. May then want to consider nebulising with saline to loosen secretions then attempt auctioning again. ...Read more

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What would be a reason to do a tracheostomy?

Varies: Mechanical obstruction of the airway is one (e.g. Tumor, swelling). The other common one is patients on long term ventilator support (respirator) who may benefit from better clearing of secretions and earlier liberation from the ventilator. ...Read more

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What's tracheostomy care for little children?

What's tracheostomy care for little children?

A few things: Trach tubes for children don't have inner cannulas, so the whole trach tube needs to be taken out and cleaned periodically. I recommend at least every 2 weeks and more often if needed. You need to have training, suction, spare tubes, etc to care for a child with a trach. It is a little more complicated if the child is also on a ventilator. ...Read more

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What happens when water enters a tracheostomy?

Coughing: It is the same as if water just "goes down the wrong way." the patient will cough and clear the water. ...Read more

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How is cpr done for someone with a tracheostomy?

Much easier: Previous CPR requires chest compression and breathing for the patient. While breathing is still important, the emphasis now is on chest compression. Having tracheostomy diminishes the need for actually breathing for the patient as chest compression achieves the same with positive and negative airflow that come with compression. ...Read more

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What is the difference between a tracheostomy and a vent?

What is the difference between a tracheostomy and a vent?

Hole vs machine: A tracheostomy is a hole in the neck that connects the trachea (windpipe) directly to the outside world. This is done for many reasons. A vent is short for a ventilator. This is used to assist a patient's breathing either in the operating room or in the intensive care unit. A ventilator is often connected to a tracheostomy. ...Read more

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Why might a patient be unable to eat after a tracheostomy?

Dysphagia: Frequently a tracheostomy is performed to protect the air way in patients that do not recover full consciousness following a stroke or other severe neurological insult to the brain and in that case the process of swallowing is also impaired.
The tracheostomy will serve to prevent aspiration of saliva and other secretions into the lungs but will not normalize swallowing in this instace. ...Read more

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As a woman, how can I feel ok about my sexuality after a tracheostomy?

As a woman, how can I feel ok about my sexuality after a tracheostomy?

Tough one: This is difficult as you need to be partnered with someone who can see past your trach and into your heart. If medically allowable, try wearing a cap or valve that will allow you to speak and avoid air exiting your trach. The most important thing to do is to not make a big deal out of it, yourself, and talk with you partner openly about his/her concerns. ...Read more

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Could coming off ventilator onto tracheostomy mean she's getting better?

Tracheostomy: Oftentimes, you're correct; however, you should discuss the exact circumstances and prognosis with the healthcare team. ...Read more

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I recently had a tracheostomy. I now have cipd. Is it ok for me to fly?

Check with your MD: You mean chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)? . In general people who had surgery for cancer of Larynx travel freely like any one, in your case due your lung condition your doctor may not allow you with out additional medical help (air ambulance) Speak to your doctor before you undertake air travel. ...Read more

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Can you suggest any alternatives to tracheostomy for 15 month old please?

Not enough detail?: Not enough detail to answer this question. Must be a complex situation and I hope you are at a top children's center to treat your baby. Adding in more history as to the baby's illness may help us give you advice. ...Read more

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What is the difference between closed and in-line suctioning of tracheostomy?

Same: In an effort to reduce infections in ventilated patients, the use of a closed or in- line suctioning system has been utilized. This reduces the chances of introducing bacteria either by the person suctioning or from the outside environment. The drawback is that the catheters used are usually plastic, and can cause tracheal irritation, injury, and bleeding. Softer rubber catheters are less traumati. ...Read more