Local repair of persistent tracheocutaneous fistulas

Sobia F. Khaja, Aaron M. Fletcher, Henry T. Hoffman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


Tracheocutaneous fistulas may persist after tracheostomy. Suture closure of the fistula may result in complications, including infection, wound dehiscence, and pneumomediastinum. We present a simplified and relatively safe technique to close persistent fistulas that may be performed under local anesthesia. A retrospective chart review was performed on 13 patients who were successfully treated, including 1 with incomplete closure that was successfully addressed by additional procedures. Our review included analysis of reported risk factors for persistence of tracheocutaneous fistulas: previous irradiation of the neck, an extended duration of cannulation, previous tracheostomies, obesity, and use of a Bjork flap or 4-flap epithelial-lined tracheostomy. All 13 patients in the study were found to have at least 1 of these risk factors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)622-626
Number of pages5
JournalAnnals of Otology, Rhinology and Laryngology
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 2011


  • Fistula
  • Tracheocutaneous fistula
  • Tracheostomy


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