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J Oral Maxillofac Surg ; 79(8): 1629-1642, 2021 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1248986


PURPOSE: Approximately 3-15% of COVID-19 patients will require prolonged mechanical ventilation thereby requiring consideration for tracheotomy. Guidelines for tracheotomy in this cohort of patients are therefore required with assessed outcomes of tracheotomies. PATIENTS AND METHODS: A retrospective chart review was performed of COVID-19 patients undergoing tracheotomy. Inclusion criteria were the performance of a tracheotomy in COVID-19 positive patients between March 11 and December 31, 2020. Exclusion criteria were lack of consent, extubation prior to the performance of a tracheotomy, death prior to the performance of the tracheotomy, and COVID-19 patients undergoing tracheotomy who tested negative twice after medical treatment. The primary predictor variable was the performance of a tracheotomy in COVID-19 positive patients and the primary outcome variable was the time to cessation of mechanical ventilation with the institution of supplemental oxygen via trach mask. RESULTS: Seventeen tracheotomies were performed between 4-25 days following intubation (mean = 17 days). Seven patients died between 4 and 16 days (mean = 8.7 days) following tracheotomy and 10 living patients realized cessation of mechanical ventilation from 4 hours to 61 days following tracheotomy (mean = 19.3 days). These patients underwent tracheotomy between 4 and 22 days following intubation (mean = 14 days). The 7 patients who died following tracheotomy underwent the procedure between 7 and 25 days following intubation (mean = 18.2 days). Seven patients underwent tracheotomy on or after 20 days of intubation and 3 survived (43%). Ten patients underwent tracheotomy before 20 days of intubation and 7 patients survived (70%). Significant differences between the mortality groups were detected for age (P = .006), and for P/F ratio at time of consult (P = .047) and the time of tracheotomy (P = .03). CONCLUSIONS: Tracheotomies are safely performed in COVID-19 patients with a standardized protocol. The timing of tracheotomy in COVID-19 patients is based on ventilator parameters, P/F ratio, patient prognosis, patient advanced directives, and family wishes.

COVID-19 , Tracheotomy , Humans , Respiration, Artificial , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2 , Tracheostomy