Retrospective study of tracheostomy indications and perioperative complications on oral and maxillofacial surgery service

Alan C. Haspel, Vincent F. Coviello, Mark Stevens

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


Purpose: Tracheostomy is an extremely common procedure performed by a variety of surgical specialties. The purpose of the present study was to review the intraoperative and perioperative management and complications, present our surgical technique, and discuss the role of our service in providing this care within a large community hospital setting. Patients and Methods: The 112 patients in our retrospective study were divided into 3 subsets: those referred by medical specialties, tumor/reconstructive surgery patients, and trauma victims. Cases of percutaneous dilational and intensive care unit bedside tracheostomy were excluded. Intraoperative and immediately postoperative complications were included. Bleeding complications were defined as those necessitating a return to the operating room. The patients were followed up for a 24-hour period postoperatively. Results: The medical referral, tumor/reconstructive, and trauma patients made up 55%, 29%, and 16% of the included patients, respectively. The overall complication rate was 2.7%. Conclusions: Conventional open tracheostomy in an operating room is associated with a low complication rate. The low incidence of perioperative bleeding can be attributed to the use of electrocautery in the division of the thyroid isthmus. This service provided an exceedingly safe and efficient surgical treatment by focusing on precise surgical protocols in an operating room setting. Intense coordination of consultation response, operating room scheduling, and communication with other services involved in these patients' care is critical to develop and maintain the privilege to provide this treatment. Our report can be used to educate the medical community regarding the role of an oral and maxillofacial surgery service in providing tracheostomy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)890-895
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2012

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Oral Surgery
  • Otorhinolaryngology


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