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Chest. 1975 Apr;67(4):398-404.

A prospective study of complications after tracheostomy for assisted ventilation.


A prospective study of 40 patients having elective tracheostomy for ventilatory assistance used fiberoptic bronchoscopy and radiologic examination to assess tracheal healing after extubation. Ten percent of patients had bleeding complications of tracheostomy and 17.5 percent had tracheostomy management problems. Sixteen percent of survivors had asymptomatic stomal site tracheal narrowing and 8 percent required tracheal resection for symptomatic stomal site tracheal stenosis, 16 percent had asymptomatic tracheal defects at the cuff site. Stomal healing was seen to consist of gradual stomal shrinkage, resolution of tracheitis, and approximation of divided tracheal rings. No statistically significant correlation was demonstrated between various factors operative during ventilatory assistance and subsequent tracheal healing. All patients should have routine endoscopic or radiologic tracheal assessment after-tracheostomy.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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