Author(s): BieringSrensen M, BieringSrensen F
Abstract Share this page
Abstract Among 600 traumatic spinal cord injured (SCI) patients admitted during a 20 year period, 67 had a tracheostomy performed (11.2\%). Of these 67 patients 46 had a cervical SCI. A concomitant thoracic trauma had occurred significantly more often in the group with thoracic or lumbar SCI than in those with a cervical SCI. The period from injury to tracheostomy was 0-48 days (median 4.4 days), and from tracheostomy to decannulation 3-167 days (median 31 days). At follow up 20 (30\%) had died, primarily because of respiratory problems. Of the remaining 47 patients, 43 (91\%) responded to a follow up questionnaire 3.5-21.7 years (median 10.4 years) after the injury. In the follow up 53\% reported never to have had any inconvenience or trouble related to the tracheostomy. The major inconvenience among the others had been of cosmetic origin (28\%), and 3 had had a surgical revision for this reason. At the time of follow up 9 patients (21\%) still had certain complaints, primarily described as difficulty in swallowing. Minitracheostomy might in the future reduce the number of these complications.
This article was published in Paraplegia
and referenced in International Journal of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation