Track: General Surgery
In this article, we submit a novel approach for
better protection and therefore, reduced transmission for
tracheostomy in a COVID-19 positive patient. Importantly,
this technique is functional, easy to set up, and
can be used for additional operations that involve risk
of aerosolization or droplet exposure to operating room
Methods or Case Description: We have developed a protocol based set up for tracheostomy in COVID positive patients that allows for safe surgery with minimal risk to staff members. The protocol has been published in the Journal of American College of Surgeons.
Before the implementation of this protocol,
we conducted numerous dry runs with special attention
to the mechanics, ease of use and set-up, and visibility
of surgical site. Importantly, it was noted that if there is
any malfunction regarding the overlying clear drape, simple
removal of the drape can be done without redraping or
further complication to the operation. Ultimately, this
protocol allows the hospital staff to minimize the risk
and exposure of the virus to the hospital staff.
In the setting of the current global coronavirus pandemic,
an increasing number of tracheostomy consults
will be obtained by our medical colleagues for these patients.
The aforementioned is a plausible and technically
feasible set up for any hospital to perform tracheostomy
safely while reducing droplet and aerosol exposure.
Berkshire Medical Center