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Maturation sutures for the paediatric tracheostomy – an extra safety measure

  • M F Craig (a1), Y Bajaj (a1) and B E J Hartley (a1)


Objective: Displacement of the tracheostomy tube in paediatric patients is a potentially fatal complication. We describe an extra safety measure which facilitates tube replacement.

Setting: Tertiary referral specialist paediatric centre.

Materials and methods: The method involves the placement of sutures between the anterior tracheal wall and skin to hasten the formation of a mature stoma (maturation sutures). We also undertook a retrospective case note review on patients from an academic tertiary referral centre. Thirty-five notes were reviewed. The most common indication for tracheostomy was airway obstruction (65 per cent). Fourteen patients had early and 10 had late complications with three tube displacements occurring. No added complications due to the use of sutures were found.

Conclusions: Our complication rates compare well with those in the literature, and we recommend considering the use of such a technique.




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