The changing concepts of the function of tracheotomy during the past 2 decades has broadened the usefulness of this procedure. Formerly used only in mechanical obstruction of the upper airway, tracheotomy is accepted currently as an adjunct of treatment in a wide variety of problems. These include coma, acute head trauma, respiratory burns, poliomyelitis, tracheobronchitis, drug intoxication, tetanus, eclampsia, traumatic chest injuries, and as a postoperative aid in major thoracic, neurosurgical, and head and neck procedures.1-4
The broadened utilization involves many poor-risk, debilitated, and chronically ill patients in whom scrupulous tracheotomy care is mandatory. When the usual measures of humidification and meticulous systematic aspiration fail to control secretions, bronchoscopy becomes necessary.
The problem of frequent bronchoscopy on the hospital wards, often in isolation units, distant to the operating suite, presented a need for simplified equipment. To meet this need a tracheoscope was designed (Figure).
The tracheoscope is a compact
BALES GA, EMERSON EB. Tracheoscope. Arch Otolaryngol. 1961;74(4):441–442. doi:10.1001/archotol.1961.00740030450015
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