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March 13, 1981

Improved tracheostomy device: safe and speedy

JAMA. 1981;245(10):1003-1004. doi:10.1001/jama.1981.03310350005002

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Any possibility of speeding up an emergency tracheostomy is bound to elicit physician interest. Witness the nearly 500 inquiries already received by a California neurosurgeon who exhibited a percutaneous tracheostomy device at a recent scientific meeting.

Frederic J. Toye, MD, who practices in Long Beach, began developing the device with James D. Weinstein, MD, of Marlton, NJ, when both were neurosurgical residents at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine in Philadelphia (JAMA [MEDICAL NEWS] 1969;209:23).

The model that they exhibited at the American College of Surgeons meeting in Atlanta last fall incorporates refinements made over the years in the course of studying animals and gathering experience with 53 patients. Toye explains the device and technique this way: Left, air in syringe proves double needle is in trachea. Outer Right, needle removed by use of slot. Dilator (with trachea needle has slot. Center, inner needle is traded for flexible