Tracheostomy resources

The National Tracheostomy Safety Project at www.tracheostomy.org.uk in the UK aims to allow patients with tracheostomies or laryngectomies to be safely cared for in hospitals.
The site contains a wealth of educational resources of use to the critical care practitioner. For example, have you thought about what do with a laryngectomy patient who presents with dyspnoea, or even apnoea? Remember that although applying oxygen to the face & neck is a default emergency action for all patients with a tracheostomy, these patients cannot be intubated and ventilated through the normal oral route since their tracheostomy is an end stoma – it does not communicate with the mouth:

Compare this with the algorithm for other patients with a tracheostomy, in whom attempts to oxygenate and ventilate, including intubation, can be made in an emergency either from the ‘top end’ (mouth) or via the stoma:

There are also a number of multimedia resources and a link to the UK Intensive Care Society’s Tracheostomy Guidelines

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *