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Tracheal size following tracheostomy with cuffed tracheostomy tubes: an experimental study.
  1. J N Leverment,
  2. F G Pearson,
  3. S Rae


    In view of the severe damage caused by unyielding, low residual volume cuffs, various modifications to the cuff of an intratracheal tube have been introduced. The merits of two low-pressure cuffs were assessed in an experimental study in dogs; both cuffs produced little visible damage to the tracheal wall in dogs intubated continuously over a two-week period. A modified technique of producing tantalum tracheobronchograms without distrubing the mucous blanket or traumatizing the tracheal wall is described. These tantalum radiological studies demonstrated a progressive temporary increase in size of the trachea at cuff level over the period of intubation with these cuffs. The implications of such a progressive weakness occurring in the tracheal muscle are discussed.

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