Dec 17, 2012
Although tracheostomy is one of the oldest and most common surgical procedures, management is often based on opinion and local practices because of a paucity of high level evidence to guide care. To address this issue, the AAO-HNS convened a national expert panel representing pediatric and adult otolaryngology, laryngology, head and neck oncologic surgery, advanced nursing practice, respiratory therapy, and emergency medicine. Using systematic review and a modified Delphi method the group achieved consensus on 77 statements that address emergencies, complications, decannulation, perioperative care, ancillary devices, and patient education. Part one of this podcast emphasizes supportive care and patient education from the perspective of two nurses on the expert panel. Part two offers the physician perspective from two panel participants with expertise in adult and pediatric tracheotomy care. A common theme is the importance of engaging patients and caregivers in all aspects of decision making and supportive care to improve outcomes and reduce complications.