Open versus percutaneous tracheostomy in patients with COVID-19: retrospective cohort analysis

Alejandro González-Muñoz, Camilo Ramírez-Giraldo, Jorge David Peña Suárez, Jaime Lozano-Herrera, Isabella Vargas Mendoza, David Rene Rodriguez Lima

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: During the COVID-19 pandemic, a great number of patients required Mechanical Ventilation (MV). Tracheostomy is the preferred procedure when difficult weaning is presented. Surgical techniques available for performing tracheostomy are open and percutaneous, with contradictory reports on the right choice. This paper aims to describe the clinical results after performing a tracheostomy in patients with COVID-19, regarding both surgical techniques. Methods: An observational, analytical study of a retrospective cohort was designed. All patients admitted to the Hospital Universitario Mayor Méderi, between March 2020 and April 2021 who presented COVID-19 requiring MV and who underwent tracheostomy were reviewed. Open versus percutaneous tracheostomy groups were compared and the primary outcome evaluated was in-hospital mortality. Results: A total of 113 patients were included in the final analysis. The median age was 66.0 (IQR: 57.2 – 72.0) years old and 77 (68.14%) were male. Open tracheostomy was performed in 64.6% (n = 73) of the patients and percutaneous tracheostomy in 35.4% (n = 40) with an in-hospital mortality of 65.7% (n = 48) and 25% (n = 10), respectively (p < 0.001). In a multivariate analysis, open tracheostomy technique [OR 9.45 (95% CI 3.20–27.92)], older age [OR 1.05 (95% CI 1.01–1.09)] and APACHE II score [OR 1.10 (95% CI 1.02–1.19)] were identified as independent risk factors for in-hospital mortality. Late tracheostomy (after 14 days) [OR 0.31 (95% CI 0.09–1.02)] and tracheostomy day PaO2/FiO2 [OR 1.10 (95% CI 1.02–1.19)] were not associated to in-hospital mortality. Conclusions: Percutaneous tracheostomy was independently associated with lower in-hospital mortality and should be considered the first option to perform this type of surgery in patients with COVID-19 in extended MV or difficulty weaning.

Original languageEnglish
Article number306
Pages (from-to)306
JournalBMC Pulmonary Medicine
Issue number1
StatePublished - 21 Aug 2023


  • COVID-19
  • Mechanical ventilation
  • Tracheostomy
  • Pandemics
  • Hospital Mortality
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Male
  • Female
  • Aged
  • Retrospective Studies


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