Thirteen of 25 stroke patients with tracheostomies died in the hospital. Of the 12 survivors, eight died within two and one-half months after discharge and one lived six months. All nine that died after discharge required continuous nursing home care. One survivor still required total nursing care three and one-half years later and two patients made a good recovery. All three patients living longer than six months following discharge had pontine lesions. There was no difference in the fate of patients with thrombotic or hemorrhagic strokes. Tracheostomies are of questionable value in stroke patients except possibly in those with brain stem lesions.
- © 1973 American Heart Association, Inc.