Author: Jessie Lynch / Editor: Fiona Mendes / Codes: EC12, RP1, SLO3, SLO6Published: 05/07/2023

You are called by the triage nurse as they are very concerned about a patient that has just arrived. A 65-year-old man has been brought in by his son. He recently had an elective tracheostomy inserted prior to radiotherapy for oropharyngeal squamous cell carcinoma.

He developed acute respiratory distress approximately fifteen minutes prior to arrival. He has increased work of breathing with accessory muscle use, is clearly distressed and pointing at his tracheostomy. His oxygen saturations are 83% in room air. You immediately move the patient into a resuscitation cubicle.