A tracheostomy is a surgical method in which an opening is made in the front of the neck. It is done by inserting a tube into the trachea (windpipe) to facilitate breathing and clear secretions from the lungs. A trach tube is another name for a tracheostomy tube.
A stoma is another name for a tracheostomy, and this refers to the neck opening through which the tube is inserted. The procedure is done in a hospital setting only and need the expertise of the professionals performing this procedure.
Indications for tracheostomy-
A tracheostomy is indicated in the following conditions:
- A blockage in the mouth or throat.
- Breathing problems due to injury, oedema (swelling), or pulmonary (lung) conditions.
- Reconstruction of the airway is indicated post tracheal or laryngectomy.
- Because of swallowing issues, the airway is protected from mucus or food.
- After a head or neck operation, airway protection is crucial.
- Long-term support for ventilators (breathing machines)
Book an appointment with a general surgeon for a tracheostomy.
Before the Procedure -
The type of tracheostomy procedure will determine how you prepare. If you're supposed to get general anaesthesia, you may be instructed by the doctor to avoid eating and drinking for several hours before the surgery and stop certain medicines.
During the Procedure -
- The tracheostomy procedure is performed under general anaesthesia.
- A surgeon will create a hole in the throat with the help of a needle or scalpel before placing a tube through the opening.
- A dressing will surround the neck opening, and the tube will be held in place with tape or stitches.
- Suppose you can't breathe on your own. In that case, the tracheostomy tube can be joined to an o2 machine (ventilator) to supply oxygen to facilitate breathing and increase the flow of oxygen to the lungs.
- In an emergency, a tracheostomy procedure can be done quickly using local anaesthesia, if there's very little time to prepare the patient for general anaesthesia.
- After the operation is completed, you will need a hospital stay until your health gets better. The doctor may remove the tracheostomy tube and close the opening during discharge.
- If you are suffering from any long-term breathing issues, the tube needs to stay in permanently to assist with breathing.
After the procedure
- Cleaning and changing the tracheostomy tube will be taught to you by a nurse to help prevent infection and complications.
- Swallowing food will be difficult; therefore nutrition will be given to you through an intravenous (IV) line or a feeding tube that passes through your mouth or nose.
- Your healthcare provider will guide you on using the tube and cleaning it regularly.
Risks in tracheostomy procedure
Tracheostomies are safe surgical procedures. There can be a possibility of complications, such as -
- The tube transporting food from the throat to the stomach could damage which is rare.
- Mucus and fluids build up inside the tracheostomy tube, making breathing unpleasant and causing infection.
- A blood clot may form in the neck and compresses the trachea, causing breathing difficulties.
- Air gets accumulated between the chest wall and the lungs, resulting in breathing issues, pain and even lung collapse.
Tracheostomy Care at Medicover
Medicover Hospitals is well equipped and supported by an expert team of surgeons who perform tracheostomy with utmost precision and care. We follow all the safety protocols and necessary guidelines to bring the best outcomes for our patients while displaying excellence in every procedure or surgery we do here.