LLSA 2021 - Review 2: Tracheostomy Emergencies
Table of Contents

<<The 2021 Lifelong Learning And Self-Assessment Study Guide, Table of Contents

Review 2: Tracheostomy Emergencies


Angela Hua, MD
Assistant Professor, Donald and Barbara Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra/ Northwell, Hempstead, NY; Faculty, Department of Emergency Medicine, Northwell Health at Long Island Jewish Medical Center
New Hyde Park, NY
Ajay K. Puri, MD
Department of Emergency Medicine, Northwell Health at North Shore University Hospital, Manhasset, NY, and Long Island Jewish Medical Center
New Hyde Park, NY
Table of Contents
  1. Article Citation
  2. Synopsis
  3. ABEM Quick Quiz
  4. Discussion
    1. Emergent Tracheostomy Complications
      1. Tracheostomy Decannulation
      2. Tracheostomy Obstruction
      3. Tracheostomy Bleeding
    2. Urgent Tracheostomy Complications
      1. Tracheoesophageal Fistula
      2. Tracheal Stenosis
      3. Infection
      4. Cutaneous Fistulas
  5. Critique
  6. References
  7. Editor’s Note
  8. ABEM Quick Quiz Answers
  9. Key Points
  10. Original Article

Article Citation

Bontempo LJ, Manning SL. Tracheostomy emergencies. Emerg Med Clin N Am. 2019;37(1):109-119.


Tracheostomies are placed for reasons such as long-term mechanical ventilation, a patient’s inability to protect the airway, or upper airway obstruction from a mass or laryngeal resection. While tracheostomies offer significant benefits in patient mobility, oxygenation/ventilation, and comfort, complications from the procedure can occur. This article reviews management of both emergent complications (decannulation, obstruction, hemorrhage) and urgent complications (tracheoesophageal fistula, tracheal stenosis, infection, cutaneous fistula formation) of tracheostomies.

<<Previous | Topic Table of Contents | Next >>