Outcomes of tracheostomy in the neonatal intensive care unit: Is there an optimal time?

Sharayu Rane, Sambasiva Bathula, Ronald L. Thomas, Girija Natarajan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Scopus citations


Objective: To compare short-term outcomes of infants who underwent early versus late tracheostomy during their initial hospitalization after birth and determine the association, if any, between tracheostomy timing and outcomes. Study design: Retrospective chart review of infants who underwent a tracheostomy during their initial hospitalization at a single site. Results: The median (range) gestational age of our cohort (n=127) was 28 (23-42) weeks and birth weight was 988 (390-4030) g. Tracheostomy indications included airway lesions (47%), bronchopulmonary dysplasia (25%), both (22%) and others (6%). Median postmenstrual age (PMA) at tracheostomy was 45 (35-75) weeks. Death occurred in 27 (21%) infants and 65 (51%) infants were mechanically ventilated. G-tube was present at discharge in 42 (33%) infants. Infants who underwent early tracheostomy (<45 weeks PMA) (n=66) had significantly lower gestational ages, weights and respiratory support than the late (≥45 weeks PMA) (n=61) group. Death (29.5% versus 14%), home ventilation (41% versus 21%) and G tube (44% versus 14%) were significantly more frequent in the late tracheostomy group. On bivariate regression, outcomes were not independently associated with tracheostomy timing, after adjustment for gestational age and respiratory support. Conclusions: Of infants who underwent tracheostomy during the initial hospitalization after birth, 21% died. On adjusted analysis, tracheostomy timing was not independently associated with outcomes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1257-1261
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Maternal-Fetal and Neonatal Medicine
Issue number12
StatePublished - Aug 2014


  • Bronchopulmonary dysplasia
  • Home ventilation
  • Tracheostomy


Dive into the research topics of 'Outcomes of tracheostomy in the neonatal intensive care unit: Is there an optimal time?'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this