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Year : 2020  |  Volume : 47  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 148-152

Social impact of tracheostomy: Our experiences at a tertiary care teaching hospital of Eastern India

1 Department of Otorhinolaryngology, IMS and SUM Hospital, Siksha “O” Anusandhan University, Bhubaneswar, Odisha, India
2 Central Research Laboratory, IMS and SUM Hospital, Siksha “O” Anusandhan University, Bhubaneswar, Odisha, India

Correspondence Address:
Prof. Santosh Kumar Swain
Department of Otorhinolaryngology, IMS and SUM Hospital, Kalinga Nagar, Bhubaneswar - 751 003, Odisha
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jss.JSS_61_20

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Background: Tracheostomy is a common surgical procedure performed in upper airway obstruction or in critically ill patients requiring prolonged ventilation. Although tracheostomy is a life-saving surgery, it is associated with higher rates of morbidity along with social stigma if stays for longer period. Although there are several studies for indications, complications, and different techniques for tracheostomy, but majority do not provide any insight into social impact of tracheostomy. Objective: The objective of this study is to assess the social impact of tracheostomy at a tertiary care teaching hospital. Materials and Methods: This is a retrospective observational study. The study was carried out from December 2017 to January 2020.There were 34 tracheostomy patients participated in this study. The observed complications in tracheostomy patients such as surgical/medical and social issues were documented. We conducted structured interviews with care givers of patients with tracheostomy. Results: Medical or surgical complications included excess mucus production (61.76'), infections at the stoma site (23.52'), blockage (17.64'), granulations around the stoma (11.76'), and maggots at the stoma (2.94'). The social impacts on tracheostomy patients included family reluctance to accept the patient with tracheostomy tube, unable to communicate and problems in social integration. Conclusion: Tracheostomy has several ranges of effects on quality of life of care givers and patients with tracheostomy. The management of social stigma associated with permanent tracheostomy is more challenging than any other complications due to tracheostomy procedure itself. It can be solved with proper counseling with family members those involved with patients.

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