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Online ISSN 1827-1596
Chacko J., Gagan B., Kumar U., Mundlapudi B.
Manipal Hospital, Bangalore, India
BACKGROUND: Real-time ultrasound guidance may enable precise introducer needle and guidewire insertion during percutaneous dilatational tracheostomy (PDT). However, the safety of PDT done solely under ultrasound guidance has not been compared to additional bronchoscopic confirmation. We aimed to compare the efficacy, incidence of complications and procedural times of real-time ultrasound guided PDTs done with and without bronchoscopic confirmation.
METHODS: We analysed all bedside PDTs performed over an 18 month period. On transverse view, the introducer needle was inserted under real time guidance into the chosen interspace. The interspace of guidewire entry was confirmed on longitudinal view. In the bronchoscope group, needle and guidewire position within the tracheal lumen were confirmed by bronchoscopy.
RESULTS: We performed 177 PDTs under ultrasound guidance during the study period - 95 with and 82 without bronchoscopic confirmation. The introducer needle was inserted at the desired level on the first attempt in 81.4% of instances with no difference between groups (77.9% vs. 85.4%, P=0.6). Introducer needle entry between the first and third tracheal cartilages did not differ between groups (90.5% vs. 92.7%, P=0.6). Procedural times were longer in the bronchoscope group (13.9 min vs. 10.7 min, P<0.0001). There were more episodes of fall in oxygen saturation below 90% in the bronchoscope group (16.8% vs. 3.7%, P=0.006). Minor bleeding occurred in 6.2% of cases and did not differ between groups.
CONCLUSION: Ultrasound guidance for PDT may be equally safe, even without bronchoscopic confirmation; the incidence of hypoxic episodes may be less and the procedure can be performed in less time.