chest tube basic theory

Specialties Educators


Can anyone assist with a very basic explanation of what a chest tube does and how. I remember when I was in nursing school, an amazingly intelligent instructor explained the thoraseal by comparing it to a bucket of water. I have not had to explain a chest tube to anyone in a long time, and I have searched and found many articles on how to care for them, what to look for, what to do and not to do. But I am looking for that one simple explanation that will make my staff say Ahah! I am looking for the so called blood & guts of what it is doing, not how to care for it. Actually, now that I think of it, I am looking for an explanation of the 3 chamber thoraseal collection unit, not the chest tube. Thanks.


121 Posts

Rmember when you were a kid and liked to put the drinking glass over your mouth and suck in.. Remember how the glass stuck to your mouth as long as you held the suction.. Chest tube works same way until pleural tissue adheres to chest wall then take chest tube out...

May the sun shine brightly on you and may the wind be always at your back


29 Posts

el... Hi! just found your post...

.....a great site =

Hope you can still use the info....

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