Tracheal stenosis refers to abnormal narrowing of the trachea that restricts your ability to breathe normally. The trachea is also commonly known as the “windpipe.” Tracheal stenosis can also be referred to as subglottic stenosis. The subglottis is the narrowest part of the airway and many stenoses (or narrowings) occur at this level of the air passageway.
Most commonly tracheal stenosis is a result of an injury or illness such as:
A medical evaluation including a health history and special testing will help your otolaryngologist diagnose the cause of your tracheal stenosis. One or more of the following tests may be ordered:
Read about lung function tests.
Your otolaryngologist will create a treatment plan based on the results of your evaluation. Treatment options, some of which are done using minimally invasive techniques, include:
You will receive a thorough diagnostic examination to evaluate if you have tracheal stenosis and determine what course of treatment is needed. Careful monitoring and the involvement of an experienced otolaryngologist are important to the successful outcome for patients with ear, nose and throat disorders and conditions.
If you are having surgery or a procedure, you will likely be scheduled for a visit to the Weiner Center for Preoperative Evaluation for pre-operative information and tests.
The day of surgery, you will be taken care of in the operating room by otolaryngologist, anesthesiologists and nurses who specialize in surgery for patients with tracheal stenosis. After surgery, you will go to the post-surgical care unit where you will receive comprehensive care by experienced surgical and nursing staff.
Learn more about your hospital stay, patient-centered care and returning home.
Brigham and Women’s Hospital provides a multidisciplinary approach to patient care by collaborating with colleagues who have extensive experience in diagnosing and treating ear, nose and throat disorders and conditions. In addition, patients have full access to BWH’s world-renowned academic medical community, with its diverse specialists, and state-of-the-art facilities.
Learn more about tracheal stenosis and your respiratory system in our health library.
Visit the Kessler Health Education Library in the Bretholtz Center to access computers and knowledgeable staff.
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