Hi, it’s Patrik Hutzel from INTENSIVECAREHOTLINE.COM , where we instantly improve the lives of Families of critically ill Patients in Intensive Care, so that you can have PEACE OF MIND, real power, real control and so that you can influence decision making fast, even if you’re not a doctor or a nurse in Intensive Care!
This is another episode of “YOUR QUESTIONS ANSWERED” and in last week’s episode I answered another question from one of our dear readers and the question last week was,
you can check it out here.
In this week’s episode of “YOUR QUESTIONS ANSWERED” I want to answer another one of our most frequently asked questions and the question this week is
”HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO COME OFF A VENTILATOR/ RESPIRATOR IN INTENSIVE CARE?”
Now, if your loved one has just been admitted to Intensive Care for critical illness, chances are that you and your Family feel challenged, out of your comfort zone, fearful, frightened, vulnerable, stressed and you feel like you are overwhelmed. Furthermore, you feel like other people are running the show and you feel like you have no or very little power, control and influence over this challenging situation.
You are also looking for answers and some of your questions may have already been answered by the Intensive Care team, however you may have also felt like not all your questions are welcome, as the Intensive Care team often also speaks in medical terms and in their medical jargon that is difficult to understand.
You are probably shocked by how your critically ill loved one looks with the ventilator / respirator and the breathing tube attached to them. You probably also feel intimidated by the Intensive Care team and by all the equipment and the technology in Intensive Care…
Nevertheless, you and your Family are wondering how long it will take for your critically ill loved one to recover and you are also wondering how long it will take for your critically ill loved one to come off the ventilator?
Ok, in order to give you an answer to this question, we have to break it down in some segments, because the length of a time on a ventilator is dependent on a number of things that I will explain here:
I’ll give you some quick examples so that you understand
1. “Straight forward” and “soft” admissions to Intensive Care
If your critically ill loved one is a “straight forward” admission to Intensive Care after elective or planned surgery or is a “soft” admission to Intensive Care for a medical emergency on a ward etc… your critically ill loved one should come off the ventilator/ respirator and out of the induced coma relatively quickly within 12- 72 hours!
Ventilation and a breathing tube after surgery are sometimes stabilising and prophylactic measures and are also measures to make sure that your loved one isn’t bleeding before the Intensive Care team takes them off the ventilator/ respirator, which is especially important after surgery. The same applies to other “soft” admissions into Intensive Care after your loved one may have had some breathing issues and they may have required the ventilator/ respirator and breathing tube for a little while to improve your loved one’s lungs with some extra pressure and oxygen. No big deal, the induced coma, the tube and the ventilator should be gone soon.
2. Ventilated for 3- 7 days
If your critically ill loved one is a more complicated admission to Intensive Care and is more unstable, such as after a car accident or after major surgery where complications occurred or if your critically ill loved one sustained a head or brain injury or had a heart attack or cardiac arrest, then the breathing tube, the ventilator/ respirator and the induced coma might be required for more than 72 hours and if your loved one is stable and progressing, breathing up on the ventilator/ respirator with the support from the ventilator/ respirator being reduced then again, your critically ill loved one should be able to come off the ventilator/ respirator.
Again, coming off the ventilator/ respirator after more than 72 hours of ventilation and induced coma, might be a little bit more difficult, because as a rule of thumb, the longer ventilation is required, the higher the risk that complications and/or delays occur of course.
So, once again, if your critically ill loved one is stable and has shown strength to breath by themselves there should be no reason that they can’t be taken off the ventilator after 3-7 days, generally speaking.
- THE 7 ANSWERS TO THE 7 MOST FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS IF YOUR LOVED ONE REQUIRES ONGOING MECHANICAL VENTILATION WITH TRACHEOSTOMY IN INTENSIVE CARE!
- FOLLOW THIS PROVEN SYSTEM TO AVOID THE 3 MOST DANGEROUS MISTAKES YOU ARE MAKING BUT YOU ARE UNAWARE OF, IF YOUR LOVED ONE REQUIRES LONG-TERM VENTILATION WITH TRACHEOSTOMY IN INTENSIVE CARE!
- PEACE OF MIND, CONTROL, POWER AND INFLUENCE EVEN IN THE MOST CHALLENGING OF CIRCUMSTANCES THAT YOU, YOUR FAMILY AND YOUR CRITICALLY ILL LOVED ONE COULD POSSIBLY FACE IN INTENSIVE CARE
- THE FAST LANE FOR PEACE OF MIND, CONTROL, POWER AND INFLUENCE WHEN YOUR LOVED ONE IS CRITICALLY ILL IN INTENSIVE CARE!
3. Ventilated for more than 7 days
If your critically ill loved one has been in Intensive Care for more than one week now and has been ventilated for more than one week by now and is still in the induced coma, you’re probably wondering and you are more importantly worried when your loved one will finally come off the ventilator.
Now, if after one week of ventilation and an induced coma the Intensive Care team still doesn’t feel confident to take out the breathing tube, they may suggest to insert a Tracheostomy. Before they actually suggest a Tracheostomy they should try and get your loved one out of the induced coma first and if your loved one is “waking up” and is cooperative and can breathe, the Intensive Care team should remove the breathing tube and give your critically ill loved one “a fair go” first to find out whether your loved one can breathe without a breathing tube and without the ventilator/ respirator.
If that fails, then the Intensive Care team would have a fair point to suggest a Tracheostomy, but once again that shouldn’t be brought up before or after at least 7-10 days of ventilation. And again it shouldn’t be done until the Intensive Care team is certain that there is no other alternative.
Once your loved one has a Tracheostomy we should be looking at the next example number 4.
4. Having a Tracheostomy
Your critically ill loved one is having a Tracheostomy because they went through one or multiple failed extubations (removal of the breathing tube in the mouth) and they were unable to breathe without the ventilator/ respirator support. Furthermore, your critically ill loved one may also be required to stay in Intensive Care for a prolonged period of time with ventilator support due to their critical illness.
The advantage your critically ill loved one is having now is that they should be able to be brought out of the induced coma and they should be able to “wake up” and hopefully communicate, at least non-verbally, because a Tracheostomy doesn’t give your loved one the ability to talk.
Keep in mind that with ventilation through the breathing tube in the mouth, an induced coma would have been necessary, whereas a Tracheostomy can usually be tolerated without the induced coma.
A Tracheostomy generally speaking also brings the advantage of getting your critically ill loved one off the ventilator quicker by trying to breathe without the ventilator/ respirator just via an oxygen mask via the Tracheostomy. The goal here is to increase the frequency your loved one can stay off the ventilator/ respirator. Initially this might be two hours on the ventilator and two hours off the ventilator. As soon as your loved one can stay off the ventilator for >24 hours, they should, in most instances, be able to leave Intensive Care, even with a Tracheostomy still in place. However many Patients also can have their Tracheostomy removed in Intensive Care before going to the ward.
How long does it take to wean ventilation and the Tracheostomy? It depends. It can range from a few days to a few weeks and sometimes few months.
If you are finding that your critically ill loved one is stuck on a ventilator with Tracheostomy and is not moving forward you have a few alternatives and options to consider:
A)Read this article here
“Tracheostomy and weaning off the ventilator in Intensive Care, how long can it take?” (Click on the link)
B) look for alternatives such as Intensive Home Care services that provide a genuine alternative to a long-term stay in Intensive Care for long-term ventilated Adults& Children with Tracheostomy. Find more information here www.INTENSIVECAREATHOME.COM.AU (Click on the link)
C) Put pressure on the Intensive Care team and demand more AND DON’T TAKE “NO” FOR AN ANSWER! How do you do that?
I’m glad you’ve asked!
How can You leverage your level of power, influence and control whilst your loved one is critically ill in Intensive Care?
You’ll get to that all important feeling of power, control and influence when you download your FREE “INSTANT IMPACT” report NOW by entering your email below! In Your FREE “INSTANT IMPACT” report you’ll learn quickly how to get real power and real control and how you can influence decision making fast, whilst your loved one is critically ill in Intensive Care! Our FREE reports help you with in-depth insight that you must know whilst your loved one is critically ill or is dying in Intensive Care! Sign up for your FREE membership and download your FREE “INSTANT IMPACT” REPORT now!
In your FREE “INSTANT IMPACT” REPORT you’ll learn how to speak the “secret” Intensive Care language so that the doctors and the nurses know straight away that you are an insider and that you know and understand what’s really happening in Intensive Care!
In your FREE report you’ll also discover
- How to ask the doctors and the nurses the right questions
- Discover the many competing interests in Intensive Care and how your critically ill loved one’s treatment may depend on those competing interests
- How to eliminate fear, frustration, stress, struggle and vulnerability even if your loved one is dying
- 5 “killer” tips& strategies helping you to get on the right path to PEACE OF MIND, control, power and influence in your situation
- You’ll get real world examples that you can easily adapt to your and your critically ill loved one’s situation
- How to stop being intimidated by the Intensive Care team and how you will be seen as equals
- You’ll get crucial ‘behind the scenes’ insight so that you know and understand what is really happening in Intensive Care
- How you need to manage doctors and nurses in Intensive Care(it’s not what you think)
Thank you for tuning into this week’s episode of “your questions answered” and I’ll see you again in another update next week!
This is Patrik Hutzel from INTENSIVECAREHOTLINE.COM and I’ll see you again next week with another update!
Sincerely, your Friend