Closed Suction Catheters
- 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
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.