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Chest Tube Removal

Posted

I'm new to the CVICU and I was just wondering why do CT Surgeons have us turn off suction just before the chest tube is removed. Wouldn't leaving it on allow for the removal of any remaining fluid?

Esme12, ASN, BSN, RN

Specializes in Critical Care, ED, Cath lab, CTPAC,Trauma. Has 41 years experience.

They want to see if the patient will tolerate the tubes being removed.

Mr. Murse

Specializes in critical care. Has 7 years experience.

If you're asking why they don't leave it on while the tube is being removed it's because it would be a whole lot more painful and possibly damaging to have the suction on while it's being pulled. It's the same idea as when you pull a JP drain: you first release the pressure in the bulb so it's not sucking on the patient's flesh as you're pulling it out of the body.

If you're asking why they turn it off before pulling it at all, it's probably to see how the patient is tolerating not having the suction running, how the lung is maintaining, etc.

If they're considering removing the tube then there's probably so little fluid (or none) left that they felt like it was time to take it out, so a little bit more suction would be pretty much pointless.......because they're taking it out anyway.

VANurse2010

Has 6 years experience.

If you're asking why they don't leave it on while the tube is being removed it's because it would be a whole lot more painful and possibly damaging to have the suction on while it's being pulled.

If you're asking why they turn it off before pulling it at all, it's probably to see how the patient is tolerating not having the suction running, how the lung is maintaining, etc.

If they're considering removing the tube then there's probably so little fluid (or none) left that they felt like it was time to take it out anyway, so a little bit more suction would be pretty much pointless.......because they're taking it out.

I imagine that tube's been on water seal for at least "a while" before it's being pulled.