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EuropePMC; 2020.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-322526


The aim of our study was to describe the clinical characteristics and outcomes of patients with confirmed severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) pneumonia who underwent elective tracheostomies. We investigated all COVID-19 patients who underwent elective tracheostomies in intensive care units (ICUs) of 23 hospitals in Hubei Province, China, from January 8, 2020 to March 25, 2020. Demographic information, clinical characteristics, treatment, details of the tracheostomy procedure, successful weaning after tracheostomy, and living status were collected and analyzed. A total of 80 patients were included. The median duration from endotracheal intubation to tracheostomy was 17.5 [IQR 11.3-27.0] days. Most tracheotomies were performed by ICU physicians (62 (77.5%)) and using percutaneous techniques (63 (78.8%)) at the ICU bedside (76 (95.0%)). At 60 days after intubation, 31 (38.8%) patients experienced successful weaning from the ventilator, 17 (21.2%) patients were discharged from the ICU, and 43 (53.8%) patients had died. Higher 60-day mortality (22 (73.3%) vs 21 (42.0%)) was identified in patients who underwent early tracheostomy. In patients with SARS-CoV-2 pneumonia, tracheostomies were feasible to conduct by ICU physicians at bedside with few major complications. However, tracheostomies within 14 days of endotracheal intubation should be avoided.