Quote from Jolie
Vaseline gauze and padded hemostats should be kept at the bedside of any patient with a chest tube. The Vaseline gauze is used as described, and the hemostats are needed in the event that the chest tube inadvertently becomes separated from the drainage system.
Actually...don't clamp an open/disconnedted chest-tube!
What you should do is stick the end of the tube in a cup of water (sterile) or saline. It creates a one-way valve for the air to exit but not re-enter.
If you clamp the tube you can create a tension-pneumo and may inadvertently kill someone. Obviously, the pt's not going to keel over dead when you clamp the tube, but if the plera arent sufficiently 'healed and sealed' a tension pneumothorax will occur.
Obviously, if a tube comes all the way out, you have no choice but vasoline-gauze...Although a tension pneumo can develope by doing this, it's probably a better option than letting more air into the pleral space.
In either case, you're in for a bad day.