Novel Use of a Suction-Irrigation Device to Remove Impacted Blood Clot from the Airway

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Abstract

Objectives:

We sought to describe the novel use of a suction-irrigation device to remove a large blood clot that was causing critical obstruction of the trachea and main stem bronchi in our patient.

Methods:

A large-bore suction-irrigation device designed for use in gynecologic cases was adapted for use in removal of an obstructing blood clot in the face of patient decompensation after several unsuccessful attempts at removal with standard otolaryngological instruments.

Results:

The tracheal obstruction and the significant bronchial obstructions were successfully removed with the suction-irrigation device. The patient's ventilatory status quickly stabilized. He was extubated the following day and discharged home.

Conclusions:

The suction-irrigation device proved highly successful in removing a large blood clot from the airway. A similarly designed device made specifically for the airway could prove useful in similar cases in the future.

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