Tracheostomy is a common airway procedure for life support. The fracture of the tracheostomy tube is a rare complication. We report a case of a 14-year-old boy whose fractured stainless steel tracheostomy tube dislodged into the tracheobronchial tree. We include a literature review and proposed recommendations for tracheostomy care.
A 14-year-old Thai boy who had a stainless steel tracheostomy tube presented with a complaint of intermittent cough for 2 months. During tracheostomy tube cleaning, his parents found that the inner tube was missing. A chest X-ray revealed a metallic density foreign body in his right main bronchus. He underwent bronchoscopic removal of the inner tracheostomy tube and was discharged without further complications.
A fractured tracheostomy tube is a rare complication. Appropriate cleaning and scheduled replacement of the tracheostomy tube may prevent this complication.
Tracheal stenosis is a potentially life-threatening condition. Tracheostomy and endotracheal intubation remain the commonest causes of benign stenosis, despite improvements in design and management of tubes. Post-tracheostomy stenosis is more frequently encountered due to earlier performance of tracheostomy in intensive care units, while the incidence of post-intubation stenosis has decreased with application of high-volume low-pressure cuffs. We present tracheal stenting in complex post-tracheostomy stenoses.
Patients and methods
We inserted tracheal silicone stents (Dumon) under general anaesthesia through rigid bronchoscopy in two patients with benign post-tracheostomy stenoses: a 39-year old woman treated for acute respiratory failure (dyspnoea, hemoptysis, alveolar bleeding, attributed to seronegative lung vasculitis) who initially underwent surgical resection and end-to-end anastomosis, but developed restenosis (anastomotic granulation/scarring), and suffered continuous relapses after multiple bronchoscopic interventions, underwent silicone stenting (length 4.5 cm, diameter 12 mm). A 20-year old man treated for severe head trauma after a car accident developed a long tracheal stricture involving the subglottic larynx (lower posterior part), having inflamed tracheostomy site tissues (positive for methicillin resistant staphylococcus aureus), underwent silicone stenting (length 7 cm, diameter 14 mm).
The airway was immediately re-establish, without complications (tracheal rupture/pneumomediastinum, bleeding). At 15 and 10 months follow-up (respectively) there was no stent migration, luminal patency was maintained without: adjacent structure erosion, secretion adherence inside the stents, granulation at the ends. Tracheostomy tissue inflammation was resolved (2nd patient), new infection was not noted. The patients maintain good respiratory function and will be evaluated for scheduled stent removal.
In symptomatic benign tracheal stenosis the gold standard is surgical reconstruction (often after interventional bronchoscopy). Stenting is reserved for symptomatic tracheal narrowing deemed inoperable due to local or general reasons: inflammation, long strictures, previous failed operation, poor respiratory, cardiac or neurological status. When stenting is decided, silicone stent insertion is considered treatment of choice in the presence of inflammation and/or when removal is desirable. Silicone stents are removable, resistant to microbial colonization and are associated with minimal granulation. In benign post-tracheostomy stenosis silicone stenting was safe and effective in re-stenosis after surgery and multiple bronchoscopic interventions, and in long stenosis in the presence on inflammation and poor neurological status.
Tracheostomy is a common airway procedure for life support. This procedure is safe, although occasional early and late complications are known to occur. Fracture and hence aspiration of a tracheostomy tube in the tracheobronchial tree is a rare late complication, which can be potentially life threatening. Published reports of a fractured tracheostomy tube presenting as a foreign body in the tracheobronchial tree are few. The most common dislodged sites reported were the trachea and the right main bronchus, the inner flange in our patient was lodged in the trachea and the left main bronchus. Foreign-body aspiration is a serious medical emergency demanding timely recognition and prompt action as was successfully done in our patient. Therapeutic rigid bronchoscopic removal is the mainstay of treatment. A periodic review of the techniques of tracheostomy care including timely check-ups for signs of wear and tear can possibly eliminate such avoidable late complications.
Broken tracheostomy tube; complications; tracheostomy care
Tracheo-innominate artery fistula (TIAF) is rare, yet the most fatal complication after tracheostomy. In the absence of immediate diagnosis and surgical management, the mortality rate is very high, because the complication can lead to sudden massive tracheal hemorrhage. Tracheal obstruction and hypovolemic shock are the major life threatening conditions. The 46-year-old woman received tracheostomy tube insertion after stroke. Three months later, there was occurrence of active bleeding at the site of tracheostomy in the patient, who participated in comprehensive rehabilitation program. Immediately, the patient received an endotracheal tube insertion into the tracheostomy site and thus massive bleeding was controlled. The patient was transferred to the intensive care unit, where her breathing was maintained by mechanical ventilation. Based on computed tomography and laryngoscopy, no remarkable findings about TIAF were detected. Nevertheless, transfemoral angiography findings revealed that innominate artery made small luminal outpouching to trachea at the carotid artery and at the subclavian artery bifurcation level, based on which a diagnosis of TIAF was made. She had an operation for TIAF, tracheoplasty with bypass graft. Subsequently, she was discharged after 15 weeks. In the present report, we describe a case of TIAF, which can occur in the patients with tracheostomy tube during rehabilitation.
Trachea; Innominate artery; Fistula
An algorithm on the indications and timing for a surgical airway in emergency as such cannot be drawn due to the multiplicity of variables and the inapplicability in the context of life-threatening critical emergency, where human brain elaborates decisions better in cluster rather than in binary fashion. In particular, in emergency or urgent scenarios, there is no clear or established consensus as to specifically who should receive a tracheostomy as a life-saving procedure; and more importantly, when. The two classical indications for emergency tracheostomy (laryngeal injury and failure to secure airway with endotracheal intubation or cricothyroidotomy) are too generic and encompass a broad spectrum of possibilities. In literature, specific indications for emergency tracheostomy are scattered and are biased, partially comprehensive, not clearly described or not homogeneously gathered. The review highlights the indications and timing for an emergency surgical airway and gives recommendations on which surgical airway method to use in critical airway.
Airway; critical airway; maxillofacial trauma; neck trauma; tracheostomy
Children with mandibular growth deficiency may develop airway obstruction. The standard treatment of severe airway obstruction involves invasive procedures such as tracheostomy. Mandibular distraction osteogenesis has been proposed in neonates with mandibular deficiency as a treatment option to avoid tracheostomy procedure later in life. Both tracheostomy and distraction osteogenesis procedures suffer from substantial shortcomings including scarring, unpredictability, and surgical complications. Forward jaw positioning appliances have been also used to enhance mandible growth. However, the effectiveness of these appliances is limited and lacks predictability. Current and future approaches to enhance mandibular growth, both experimental and clinical trials, and their effectiveness are presented and discussed.
Airway management in patients with faciomaxillary injuries is challenging due to disruption of components of upper airway. The anesthesiologist has to share the airway with the surgeons. Oral and nasal routes for intubation are often not feasible. Most patients have associated nasal fractures, which precludes use of nasal route of intubation. Intermittent intraoperative dental occlusion is needed to check alignment of the fracture fragments, which contraindicates the use of orotracheal intubation. Tracheostomy in such situations is conventional and time-tested; however, it has life-threatening complications, it needs special postoperative care, lengthens hospital stay, and adds to expenses. Retromolar intubation may be an option, But the retromolar space may not be adequate in all adult patients. Submental intubation provides intraoperative airway control, avoids use of oral and nasal route, with minimal complications. Submental intubation allows intraoperative dental occlusion and is an acceptable option, especially when long-term postoperative ventilation is not planned. This technique has minimal complications and has better patients’ and surgeons’ acceptability. There have been several modifications of this technique with an expectation of an improved outcome. The limitations are longer time for preparation, inability to maintain long-term postoperative ventilation and unfamiliarity of the technique itself. The technique is an acceptable alternative to tracheostomy for the good per-operative airway access.
Adult; intubation; intratracheal methods; maxillofacial injuries/surgery; oral/methods; surgery
A retrospective survey of 140 cases of elective tracheostomy following open-heart surgery has been undertaken. All the tracheostomies were performed by surgeons of the Cardiac Unit using a standard technique during the years 1962 to 1966 inclusive. The indications during this period are discussed and possible reasons for the high incidence of tracheostomy are considered. The complications have been carefully assessed. The results indicate that, although there is room for improvement, a reduction in the number and severity of complications has been achieved. In particular there have been few late sequelae, which is attributed to good surgical technique and the adoption of the Björk operation. In 60% of the patients there were no complications; one death was directly attributable to tracheostomy.
False passage and loss of airway during tracheostomy are not uncommon, especially in patients with short and thick necks. Distorted neck anatomy following either repeated insertion attempts or due to underlying malignancy may make it very difficult to locate the trachea even while attempting open/surgical tracheostomy, despite good exposure of the neck in such situations. The lightwand is not an ideal device for tracheal intubation in such patients. However, it can be useful in these patients while performing open tracheostomy. Passing the lightwand through the orotracheal tube can aid in rapid identification of the trachea in such situations and may help reduce the occurrence of complications subsequent to repeated false passage. We report a series of four such cases where use of lightwand aided in rapidly locating the trachea during tracheostomy complicated by distorted anatomy.
Decannulation; distorted anatomy; false passage; lightwand; open tracheostomy
The effect of various airway management strategies, such as the timing of tracheostomy, on liberation from mechanical ventilation (MV) is uncertain. We tested the hypothesis that tracheostomy, when performed prior to active weaning, does not influence the duration of weaning or of MV in comparison with a more selective use of tracheostomy.
Patients and methods
In this observational prospective cohort study, surgical patients requiring ≥ 72 hours of MV were followed prospectively. Patients undergoing tracheostomy prior to any active weaning attempts (early tracheostomy [ET]) were compared with patients in whom initial weaning attempts were made with the endotracheal tube in place (selective tracheostomy [ST]).
We compared the duration of weaning, the total duration of MV and the frequency of fatigue and pneumonia. Seventy-four patients met inclusion criteria. Twenty-one patients in the ET group were compared with 53 patients in the ST group (47% of whom ultimately underwent tracheostomy). The median duration of weaning was shorter (3 days versus 6 days, P = 0.05) in patients in the ET group than in the ST group, but the duration of MV was not (median [interquartile range], 11 days [9–26 days] in the ET group versus 13 days [8–21 days] in the ST group). The frequencies of fatigue and pneumonia were lower in the ET group patients.
Determining the ideal timing of tracheostomy in critically ill patients has been difficult and often subjective. To standardize this process, it is important to identify objective criteria to identify patients most likely to benefit from the procedure. Our data suggest that in surgical patients with resolving respiratory failure, a patient who meets typical criteria for a trial of spontaneous breathing but is not successfully extubated within 24 hours may benefit from a tracheostomy. Our data provide a framework for the conduct of a clinical trial in which tracheostomy timing can be assessed for its impact on the duration of weaning.
Tracheostomy prior to active weaning may hasten liberation from ventilation and reduce complications. However, this does not reduce the overall duration of MV.
respiratory failure; tracheostomy; weaning
Tracheoinnominate artery fistula is known as a potentially fatal complication for patients who depend on tracheostomy or tracheoesophageal diversion. Since the bleeding from a TIF is often difficult to control, preventative procedures are recommended to avoid this complication. An 11-year-old girl with hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy and scoliosis developed tracheal stenosis caused by compression from the innominate artery. Respiratory control with intubation through the tracheal stenosis was needed, and the patient was at high risk for developing a TIF. She underwent ligation of the innominate artery at tracheostomy. Subsequent tracheostomy revealed a widened tracheal lumen and no further complications. Prophylactic ligation of the innominate artery and creation of tracheostomy might be considered as a valid option for patients at high risk of developing TIF.
Tracheostomy is one of the most frequent procedures carried out in critically ill patients with major advantages compared to translaryngeal endotracheal intubation such as reduced laryngeal anatomical alterations, reduced inspiratory load, better patient's tolerance and nursing. Thus, tracheostomy can enhance patient's care in patients who need prolonged mechanical ventilation and/or control of airways. The right timing of tracheostomy remains controversial, however it appears that early tracheostomy in selected severe trauma, burn and neurological patients could be effective to reduce the duration of mechanical ventilation intensive care stay and costs. Percutaneous tracheostomy techniques are becoming the procedure of choice in the majority of the cases, since they are safe, easy and quick, and complications are minor. However, percutaneous tracheostomies should be always performed by experienced physicians to avoid unnecessary additional complications. It is not clear the superiority of one percutaneous technique compared to another, but experience of the operator and clinical individual anatomical, physiopathological characteristics of the patient should be always considered. We believe that the operator should have experience of at least one intrusive and one extrusive percutaneous technique. The general "optimal" tracheostomy technique and timing do not exist, but tracheostomy should be targeted on the patient's individual clinical characteristics.
neurological injury; open surgical tracheostomy; percutaneous dilational tracheostomy; respiratory failure; tracheostomy; trauma
Children with craniofacial abnormalities associated with retromicrognathia and glossoptosis often have compromised upper airway flow. In severe cases, emergency intubation is necessary immediately after birth, and tracheostomy is advocated to manage the airway in the neonatal period and to allow for feeding. Early intervention with bilateral mandibular osteogenesis avoids the need for tracheostomy, along with its complications, and it targets the primary etiologic factor of the problem—the anomalous anatomy of the mandible. We report two neonates with severe Pierre Robin sequence managed with bilateral mandibular distraction osteogenesis on day 9 and day 11 of life. The surgical techniques and distraction and consolidation periods were similar apart from the distraction devices used. The procedures were successful with early extubation (day 5 and day 7), oral feeding tolerance (day 11 and day 13) and hospital discharge (day 19 and day 18). Total mandibular distraction was 19 mm and 23.45 mm, respectively. No major complications were reported. Medium to long-term results were good. Bilateral mandibular distraction osteogenesis in the neonate is a safe and accurate procedure and is the primary option in cases of selected severe Pierre Robin sequence.
distraction osteogenesis; micrognathia; Pierre Robin; mandibular distraction
Percutaneous tracheostomy is a routine procedure in intensive care
units. In cases of very low position of the larynx, cervical spine
deformation, morbid obesity, or neck tumor, performance of the
classic tracheostomy is inapplicable. Retrosternal approach to
tracheostomy in such 20 patients is herein reported. After
preoperative neck computerized tomography to define the neck
anatomy, a small suprasternal incision followed by a short
retrosternal tissue dissection to expose the trachea was done; the
trachea was then catheterized at the level of the 2nd ring in the
usual tracheostomy manner. The immediate and late (≥6 months) outcomes were similar to that of the standard tracheostomy. Thus,
percutaneous retrosternal tracheostomy is safe in patients with
abnormal positioning of the trachea or neck constitution. It is a
bedside applicable technique, that, however, requires caution to
avoid hazardous vascular complications.
A 77-year-old man suffered hypoxemic cardiac arrest by supraglottic and tracheal airway obstruction in the emergency department. A previously unknown cervical fracture had caused a traumatic retropharyngeal–mediastinal hematoma. A lifesaving surgical emergency tracheostomy succeeded. Supraglottic and tracheal obstruction by a retropharyngeal–mediastinal hematoma with successful resuscitation via emergency tracheostomy after hypoxemic cardiac arrest has never been reported in a context of trauma. This clinically demanding case outlines the need for multidisciplinary airway management systems with continuous training and well-implemented guidelines. Only multidisciplinary staff preparedness and readily available equipments for the unanticipated difficult airway solved the catastrophic clinical situation.
Airway obstruction; endotracheal; emergency medicine; intubation; tracheostomy; trauma center
Tracheal stenosis is the most common late airway complication of tracheostomy. Severe tracheal stenosis resulted in hemodynamic deterioration and impairment of respiratory system mechanics. We cared for an 86-year-old man with severe tracheal stenosis due to prolonged placement of a tracheostomy tube for 42-months. At the distal tip of the tracheostomy tube, bronchoscopy revealed severe tracheal luminal obstructions by granulation tissue. During pressure-controlled ventilation, the peak airway pressure was much higher than the inspiratory pressure. For patients with clinical signs of tracheal stenosis after tracheotomy, bronchoscopy should be done as early as possible.
Airway inaccessibility is one of the most dreaded situations in emergency medicine. Surgical tracheostomy is not indicated in emergency situations because it takes a long time and can result in death if respiratory support cannot be provided during the procedure. Emergency percutaneous tracheostomy (PCT) was widely regarded as absolutely counterindicated. Recently, however, a number of studies have appeared on the safety and feasibility of PCT in situations regarded as presenting relative contraindications. We describe the life-saving action of Griggs' PCT in a patient with upper airway obstruction resulting from burns, smoke injuries, and unsuccessful tracheal intubation attempts. Emergency PCT using the Griggs technique was immediately performed without aseptic care, and a 9-mm internal diameter tracheostomy tube was successfully inserted in less than one minute. Griggs' PCT is a quick technique that secures an airway when tracheal intubation fails. The feasibility - in selected cases - of using an emergency Griggs' PCT, in experienced hands, rather than cricothyroidotomy or surgical tracheostomy, is recommended.
EMERGENCY; PERCUTANEOUS; TRACHEOSTOMY; SEVERELY; BURNED PATIENT; UPPER; AIRWAY; OBSTRUCTION; CIRCULATORY; FAILURE
The purpose of this paper was to inform the reader that prolonged upper airway obstruction after posterior cervical spine surgery is a possible complication for patients with metastatic tumor of upper cervical spine. A 49-year-old man presented severe neck pain during posture changes due to metastatic spinal tumor of C2. Occipitocervical fusion following removal of the posterior arch of C1 and laminectomy of C2 via the single posterior approach was performed 2 weeks after radiation therapy. After the surgery, life-threatening airway obstruction due to pharyngeal oedema occurred immediately after extubation that required emergency tracheostomy. The airway obstruction did not improve well during the patient's postoperative course. Once pharyngeal oedema occurs in patients with metastatic tumor of upper cervical spine who undergo posterior cervical spine surgery following radiation therapy to the neck, the pharyngeal oedema may be constant for a long period of time.
Tracheostomy remains a very important life saving surgical procedure worldwide and particularly in our environment where patients present late in upper airway obstruction. Little work has been done on this subject in our environment and therefore it was necessary to conduct this study to describe our own experiences with tracheostomy, outlining the common indications and outcome of tracheostomized patients in our setting and compare our results with those from other centers in the world.
This was a 10-year retrospective study which was conducted at Bugando Medical Centre from January 2001 to December 2010. Data were retrieved from patients' files kept in the Medical record department and analyzed using SPSS computer software version 15.0. Ethical approval to conduct the study was obtained from relevant authority before the commencement of the study.
A total of 214 patients were studied. The male to female ratio was 3.1: 1. The majority of patients were in the 3rd decade of life. The most common indication for tracheostomy was upper airway obstruction secondary to traumatic causes in 55.1% of patients, followed by upper airway obstruction due to neoplastic causes in 39.3% of cases. The majority of tracheostomies (80.4%) were performed as an emergency. Transverse skin crease incision was employed in all the cases. Post-tracheostomy complication rate was 21.5%. Complication rate was significantly higher in emergency tracheostomy than in electives (P < 0.001). The duration of temporary tracheostomy ranged from 8 days to 46 months, with a median duration of 4 months. Tracheostomy decannulation was successively performed in 72.4% of patients who survived. Mortality rate was 13.6%. The mortality was due to their underlying illnesses, none had tracheostomy-related mortality.
Upper airway obstruction secondary to trauma and laryngeal tumors still remains the most common indication for tracheostomy in our centre and tracheostomy is still a life saving procedure in the surgical management of airway despite complications which are seen more commonly in paediatric patients. Most of tracheostomy related complications can be avoided by meticulous attention to the details of the technique and postoperative tracheostomy care by skilled and trained staff.
Tracheostomy; Indications; Outcome; Tanzania
To report conversion from tracheostomy (TIV) to noninvasive intermittent positive pressure ventilation (NIV) for a continuously ventilator-dependent patient with high-level spinal cord injury (SCI) with no measurable vital capacity (VC = 0 mL) to resolve tracheostomy-associated complications.
A case report of a 38-year-old female in a chronic care facility in Japan with a 10-year history of ventilator-dependent tetraplegia (C1 ASIA-A) presented for increasing difficulty vocalizing. She had been using a fenestrated cuffed tracheostomy tube to produce speech with the cuff deflated. Speech was increasingly hypophonic, because of tracheostoma enlargement, tube migration, and tracheal granulation.
The NIV was provided via nasal and oral interfaces, the ostomy was surgically closed, and vocalization resumed. Airway secretions were expulsed using manually assisted coughing. The patient returned to the community.
Conversion to NIV should be considered for ventilator-dependent patients with SCI who have adequate bulbar-innervated muscle function to permit effective speech and assisted coughing.
cough; mechanical ventilation; respiratory paralysis; spinal cord injury; tetraplegia
Tracheostomy still remains a life-saving procedure to secure a patent airway in emergency situations. Anaesthetic management of tracheostomy in paediatric patients with bilateral vocal cord immobility and acute respiratory distress in emergency has always been a great challenge to the anaesthesiologists. Administering general anaesthesia in a child for recannulation of tracheostomy in emergency is far more challenging. We report a case of a 4-year-old male child in whom tracheostomy tube was accidentally removed 2 months back and the wound got stenosed gradually leading to acute respiratory distress. Emergency dilatation and recannulation of tracheostomy wound was planned under general anaesthesia and the case was managed successfully.
Recannulation; tracheostomy; vocal cord pal
Background. Ludwig's angina is a rapidly spreading
cellulitis that may produce upper airway obstruction often leading
to death. There is very little published information regarding
this condition in the pregnant patient. Case. A 24-year
old black female was admitted at 26 weeks gestation with tooth
pain, submandibular swelling, severe trismus, and dysphagea,
consistent with Ludwig's angina. Her treatment included emergent
tracheostomy, incision and drainage of associated spaces, teeth
extraction, and antibiotic therapy. Conclusions. During a
life threatening infectious situation such as the one described,
risks of maternal and fetal morbidity include both septicemia and
asphyxia. Furthermore, the healthcare provider must consider the
risks that the condition and the possible treatments may cause the
mother and her unborn child.
Submental intubation (SI) has been proposed as an alternative to nasoendotracheal intubation when oral endotracheal intubation is contraindicated. In patients who require intubation for maxillofacial reconstruction, this is an alternative to a traditional tracheostomy. The present case report presents an 18-year-old woman who suffered a comminuted mandibular fracture. Two days after her accident, she was taken to the operating room for open reduction with internal fixation of her mandible; however, the anesthesia staff was unable to nasally intubate the patient. A SI was performed. The procedure was completed without complications and the surgery accomplished with the SI. The patient was able to avoid a tracheostomy for an isolated operation. SI avoids the dangers of nasoendotracheal intubation in patients with midfacial fractures and avoids complications related to tracheostomy. Thus, SI may serve as an alternative to tracheostomy in patients without other medical conditions and indications for long-term intubation.
Facial fractures; Maxillomandibular fixation; Maxillofacial reconstruction; Submental intubation
ENT surgeons are called in more often these days to perform tracheostomy in critically ill patients. When to perform tracheostomy is a question, which is most often asked. There are definite advantages for performing tracheostomy at an early stage of intensive care, but at the same time we need to be aware of the possible complications that are associated with it. Tracheal stenosis being one of the most common complications, which can be prevented if proper care is taken from the time tracheostomy is done.
Tracheostomy; Tracheal stenosis; Tracheo-innominate artery; stula
A multidisciplinary tracheostomy team was created in 2005 to follow critically ill patients who had undergone a tracheostomy until their discharge from hospital. Composed of a surgeon, surgical resident, respiratory therapist, speech-language pathologist and clinical nurse specialist, this team has been meeting twice a week for rounds involving patients who transitioned from the intensive care unit (ICU) to the medical and surgical wards. Our objective was to assess the impact of this multidisciplinary team on downsizing and decannulation times, on the incidence of speaking valve placement and on the incidence of tracheostomy-related complications on the ward.
This study was conducted at a tertiary care, level-1 trauma centre and teaching hospital and involved all patients who had received a tracheostomy during admission to the ICU from Jan. 1 to Dec. 31, 2004 (preservice group), and from Jan. 1 to Dec. 31, 2006 (postservice group). We compared the outcomes of patients who required tracheostomies in a 12-month period after the team was created with those of patients from a similar time frame before the establishment of the team.
There were 32 patients in the preservice group and 54 patients in the post-service group. Under the new tracheostomy service, there was a decrease in incidence of tube blockage (5.5% v. 25.0%, p = 0.016) and calls for respiratory distress (16.7% v. 37.5%, p = 0.039) on the wards. A significantly larger proportion of patients also received speaking valves (67.4% v. 19.4%, p < 0.001) after creation of the team. Furthermore, there appeared to be a decreased time to first tube downsizing (26.0 to 9.4 d) and decreased time to decannulation (50.4 to 28.4 d), although this did not reach statistical significance owing to our small sample size.
Standardized care provided by a specialized multidisciplinary tracheostomy team was associated with fewer tracheostomy-related complications and an increase in the use of a speaking valve.