Bacterial Tracheitis Follow-up

Updated: Nov 26, 2018
  • Author: Sujatha Rajan, MD; Chief Editor: Russell W Steele, MD  more...
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Follow-up

Further Outpatient Care

Patient should complete an appropriate course (usually 10 d) of oral antibiotics.

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Further Inpatient Care

Consider extubation when bacterial tracheitis appears to be resolving, especially with decreased secretions suctioned from the endotracheal tube.

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Transfer

Transfer is required for patients in respiratory distress, patients in need of a pediatric intensive care unit, and patients who need a pediatric-sized bronchoscope.

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Complications

The following complications have been reported:

  • Pneumonia - Reported in 19-60% of cases (Guidelines for avoiding health care–associated pneumonia have been established. [14] )

  • Septicemia

  • Toxic shock

  • Adult respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS)

  • Endotracheal tube complications

    • Plugging, accidental extubation

    • Postextubation stridor, subglottic stenosis

  • Anoxic encephalopathy

  • Cardiorespiratory arrest

A retrospective study by Gross et al, in which four patients who received antibiotic treatment for bacterial laryngotracheitis showed improvement in presumed iatrogenic laryngotracheal stenosis, suggested that airway bacterial growth is significantly involved in adult postintubation airway injury. The patients had a history of intubation and/or tracheostomy, with complete resolution of upper airway obstruction seen in three of the patients after laryngotracheitis treatment and significant improvement of airway status seen in the fourth. [15]

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Prognosis

Once the patient is past the acute phase, complete recovery is expected.

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Patient Education

Keep immunizations up-to-date.

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