INTRODUCTION: Tracheostomy is applied for many different indications in children. The most comman indications are prolonged intubation, central hypoventilation, neuromuscular disorders, severe laryngomalacia or tracheomalacia.
METHODS: Our aim was to evaluate the demographic features and follow-up processes of patients with tracheostomy at our clinic. The data of 48 patients were retrospectively reviewed.
RESULTS: Forty eight patients were enrolled, 19 of them were girls, 29 of them were boys. The mean age of the patients was 2.5 ± 1.8 years. The median age of tracheostomy operations was 6 months (25P: 3 months, 75P: 15 months). Tracheostomy indications were prolonged intubation, neuromuscular disorders, upper airway anomalies and trauma, respectively. The most common underlying causes in patients with prolonged intubation were bronchopulmonary dysplasia and congenital heart disease. All patients received mechanical ventilation (MV) support before prosecure, and for 32 patients (66.7%) there were no need for respiratory support at follow up. Twenty-one patients (43.8%) were still tracheostomized and 19 patients (39.6%) were decannulated. Fourteen of twentyone patients who were tracheostomized and 2 of 19 patients who were decannulated were still receiving respiratory support at home during the study period. Two patients (4.2%) were lost during follow up and 6 patients (12.4%) died.
DISCUSSION AND CONCLUSION: Tracheostomy is a voluable prosecure for patients who need prolonged intubation by shortening intensive care stay, allowing the follow up at home in normal life, and low cost. However, successful decanulation as soon as possible, is the final goal of management.