Tracheotomy in infants and young children: the changing perspective 1970-1985

W S Line, D B Hawkins, E J Kahlstrom, E F MacLaughlin, J L Ensley
Laryngoscope 1986, 96 (5): 510-5
One hundred fifty-three children 3 years of age or younger who had tracheotomies performed during the past 15 years are reviewed. During this time, short-term endotracheal intubation for airway obstruction from acute infections and long-term intubation for patients on ventilators have replaced early tracheotomy for these conditions. The number of tracheotomies decreased during each of three 5-year periods, from 73 to 55 to 25, respectively. Improvements in medical management resulted in prolonged survival of children with multiple abnormalities and resulted in more prolonged tracheotomies. Early complications occurred in 12% of patients and late complications occurred in 26%. In spite of changes in the indications, basic fundamentals of pediatric tracheotomy management remain unchanged.

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