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VOLUME 2 , ISSUE 1 ( January-April, 2010 ) > List of Articles


Tracheostomy in Head and Neck Cancers

Reema Rai, Parag Watve, Bachi T Hathiram

Keywords : Tracheostomy,Head and neck cancer

Citation Information : Rai R, Watve P, Hathiram BT. Tracheostomy in Head and Neck Cancers. Int J Otorhinolaryngol Clin 2010; 2 (1):53-60.

DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10003-1017

Published Online: 01-08-2010

Copyright Statement:  Copyright © 2010; The Author(s).


The term ‘tracheostomy’ or ‘tracheotomy’ refers to the procedure whereby a communication is made between the anterior wall of the trachea and the exterior which bypasses the upper air passages. It results in the formation of a fistulous tract between the anterior aspect of the neck and the trachea allowing air to enter the lower respiratory passages without passing through the nose, pharynx and larynx.

It is performed at all ages, however, there are significant differences in the procedure when performed in adults and children.

‘Laryngotomy’ or ‘cricothyrotomy’ is the emergency operation where the airway is opened through the cricothyroid membrane in case of acute respiratory obstruction where there is no time for tracheostomy or inavailability of a competent surgeon to perform the tracheostomy. It is a relatively simple procedure and life-saving.

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