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552Closed Suction Catheters

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  • Alistair Wright
    Feb 1, 2004
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      Hi Jessica, you mentioned that when Jack is suctioned his ventilation
      circuit is disconnected. This was the way we used to suction Matthew
      as well, but found that he used to desaturate quite a bit when
      suctioned and then take quite a while to recover.

      We then started using closed suction catheters. These connect between
      the trachea connection and the vent and allow suctioning with the
      vent connected. They also have a little opening (with a one way
      valve) for injecting saline. The benefits are that the effect of the
      suction is not so severe as he is still being ventilated (and the
      lungs remain inflated during the suction). I also believe it is a bit
      more sterile (because one is not opening the trachea as often). It is
      also a lot easier and gave me and Janice the confidence to suction
      him more often ourselves. The catheter part has coloured stripes on
      it so that we also know exactly how far to insert it without jabbing
      his lungs.

      The disadvantages include a slightly increased deadspace in the
      ventilation circuit (for CO2 to accumulate) and are a bit more costly
      as they need to be changed every 3 days.

      If I can work out how to attach a photo to the group I will or anyone
      who is interested I will email a photo directly to them.