Trach and Ventilator Patients

Tracheotomy and use of a medical ventilator are two common procedures for helping someone who has trouble breathing on their own.


A tracheotomy is a medical procedure, in which a surgeon cuts an incision on the front of the throat, between tracheal rings.  This incision creates an airway between the trachea and outside environment and allows for breathing without the use of the mouth or nose.  The resulting stoma can function as its own airway or as a site for a tracheotomy tube.

There are Many Reasons for a Tracheotomy Including:

  • cancers of the throat/neck
  • acute angioedema
  • inflammation of the neck
  • obstruction of the windpipe
  • severe sleep apnea

It is necessary to take special care in order to maintain normal breathing in trach and ventilator patients.  Normally the mouth/nose help filter and protect the throat.  However, when they are not functioning correctly, fluids build up in the throat.  Suctioning of these fluids is necessary to prevent blockages.

Medical Ventilator

A medical ventilator is a machine specifically designed to help a person who cannot breathe on their own.  There are many different types of ventilators, the simplest of which consists of a mask placed over the nose/mouth and a bag which pushes air in and out of the lungs when squeezed.  More complicated systems incorporate a series of pumps, tubes, and turbines to mechanically pump air in and out of the lungs.  Ventilators are mainly used in the intensive care unit (ICU) of a hospital, however, some are available for home care.

For more information on tracheotomies and ventilators,Or if you would like to take a tour of the facility, please contact us.