Incidence of ventilator associated pneumonia in tracheostomised and non tracheostomised patients

David D. M. Rosario, Anitha Sequeira


Background: Pneumonia is the most common hospital acquired infection in the intensive care unit. One of the causes for hospital acquired pneumonia is ventilator associated pneumonia. Tracheostomy is known to prevent occurrence of ventilator associated pneumonia as it decreases the respiratory dead space, assists in better clearance of secretions and prevents chances of aspiration. Generally, tracheostomy is done after 2 weeks of endotracheal intubation to prevent tracheal complications. The aim of this study is to identify the incidence of ventilator associated pneumonia in tracheostomised and non tracheostomised patients and to see if early tracheostomy can prevent development of ventilator associated pneumonia.

Methods: The study was conducted at a tertiary care hospital during a period of four years. 100 patients who were on mechanical ventilation for more than 7 days where taken up for the study. APACHE 4 scoring system was used. The incidence of Ventilator associated pneumonia in tracheostomised and non tracheostomised patients was studied.

Results: In our study the total incidence of VAP was 44 %. In our study out of the 42 patients who had undergone tracheostomy 13 (30.95%) patients had ventilator associated pneumonia. Among the non-tracheostomised patients 31 (53.44%) out of 58 patients developed ventilator associated pneumonia. In our study the incidence of ventilator associated pneumonia was much lesser (12%) in patients who underwent tracheostomy in the period 7 to 10 days after mechanical ventilation, whereas in those who underwent tracheostomy after 11 days incidence of ventilator associated pneumonia was much higher.

Conclusions: Our study showed that the incidence of ventilator associated pneumonia was much higher among non tracheostomised patients compared to patients who underwent tracheostomy. Hence patients undergoing earlier tracheostomy had a clear advantage than those undergoing tracheostomy late or non tracheostomised patients in preventing ventilator associated pneumonia.


APACHE 4 scoring system, Tracheostomy, VAP-ventilator associated pneumonia

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