Impact of Low-Volume, Low-Pressure Tracheostomy Cuffs on Acute Mucosal Injury in Swine

Alexandra J. Berges, Ioan A. Lina, Rafael Ospino, Hsiu Wen Tsai, Dacheng Ding, Jessica M. Izzi, Alexander T. Hillel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: Tapered low-volume, low-pressure (LVLP) cuffs have been introduced to improve sealing and reduce injury from tracheostomy and endotracheal intubation compared to traditional cylindrical high-volume, low-pressure (HVLP) cuffs. The objective of this study is to develop a swine model of tracheostomy injury and to compare live tissue response following LVLP and HVLP tracheostomy placement. Study Design: In vivo animal study. Setting: Academic institution. Methods: Swine underwent tracheostomy followed by placement of LVLP and HVLP tracheostomy cuffs at 30 cm H2O. After 24 and 48 hours, tracheal specimens underwent histopathological analysis including cilia, lamina propria and epithelial thickness, and mucosal injury score. Results: In all cuff contact areas, mean epithelial thickness for both tracheostomy cohorts was decreased compared to control epithelium at 24 and 48 hours (P <.01). HVLP proximal epithelium thickness was decreased at 24 and 48 hours relative to LVLP sections (P <.05). Lamina propria thickness in proximal LVLP sections was less than HVLP sections at 24 hours and 48 hours (P <.05). Mucosal injury score at areas of cuff contact was increased in tracheostomy cohorts relative to controls (P <.001), with HVLP injury score greater than LVLP at the proximal cuff (P <.05). Conclusion: In a swine model, tracheostomy resulted in increased mucosal injury compared to normal tracheal mucosa. LVLP cuffs resulted in less injury than HVLP cuffs, with reduced mucosal inflammation and improved health of epithelium and lamina propria. The wider proximal LVLP cuff demonstrated improved mucosal health compared to the HVLP cylindrical cuff.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)716-724
Number of pages9
JournalOtolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery (United States)
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2022


  • cuff design
  • endotracheal tube
  • endotracheal. intubation
  • swine model
  • tracheal injury
  • tracheostomy cuff

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Otorhinolaryngology


Dive into the research topics of 'Impact of Low-Volume, Low-Pressure Tracheostomy Cuffs on Acute Mucosal Injury in Swine'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this