Chest tube to suction?

  1. 0
    If a patient has an order for a chest tube to 20cm wall suction does it make a difference if it's connected directly to the suction regulator or if it's connected to a canister (such as a canister for NGT drainage)? Will the suction be the same?

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  2. 17 Comments...

  3. 1
    I have always been taught to take the canister off when using chest tube sx as the canister creates too much dead space. So, you would just hook the CT directly to the SX regulator and put it on continuous sx until your drainage system goes to 20 cm.
    traumamomtx30 likes this.
  4. 1
    We use the canister. Then turn up the suction until you have a "gentle rolling" of the bubbles.
    BelleKat likes this.
  5. 0
    I have only used the canister. It may be because its getting late, but I'm having trouble visualizing how the hook-up would work without it.
  6. 0
    We just hook the chest tube suction line directly to the wall suction. The pleurevac serves as the canister. You set the "20cm" of suction by the pleurevac regulator.
  7. 4
    It doesn't matter which way you do it as it is the level of the water in the chamber that determines the amount of suction. The water can be boiling and roiling away and there will be no more suction than if there is just a light bubbling, so it really doesn't matter whether you use the canister or not
    wooh, BelleKat, GOMER42, and 1 other like this.
  8. 0
    We leave the canister in. The chest tube has a dial you set for the amt of suction you want in the tube. The wall could be turned up to 100 but you'll only get 20 if thats what you set it to.
  9. 2
    doesn't matter if it's a direct line to the vacuum regulator or hooked to a canister....the -20 cm comes from the water level in the pleura-vac. a gentle rolling bubble is all that is required.
    wooh and BelleKat like this.
  10. 0
    Quote from mpccrn
    doesn't matter if it's a direct line to the vacuum regulator or hooked to a canister....the -20 cm comes from the water level in the pleura-vac. a gentle rolling bubble is all that is required.
    You don't have to have a rolling bubble of the water level at all if the drainage chamber has a dial on it to control the amount of suction.
  11. 1
    We make it a habit to connect the chest tube to a canister and the canister is connected to wall suction. We do this for chest tubes to bottles or pleuravacs and for NG suction. We had an incident where someone couldn't remember that NG suction should ALWAYS go to the canister and they set it up so that gastric juice got sucked straight into the wall. YUCK!
    wooh likes this.


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