Objective—To compare the amount of air leakage into the thoracic cavity associated with each of 4 thoracostomy tube placement techniques in canine cadavers.
Sample Population—28 canine cadavers.
Procedures—Thoracostomy tube placement techniques (7 cadavers/technique) included subcutaneous tunneling with a silicone tube by use of Carmalt forceps or with a polyvinyl chloride tube by use of a trocar (SC-CARM and SC-TRO, respectively) and tunneling under the latissimus dorsi muscle with similar tube-instrument techniques (LD-CARM and LD-TRO, respectively). Differences in intrapleural pressures (IPPs) measured before and after tube placement and before and after tube removal were calculated; duration of air leakage around the tubes was assessed by use of a 3-chamber thoracic drainage system.
Results—Tunneling method and depth had no interaction effect on the difference in IPP measured before and after tube placement; the IPP difference for both forceps technique groups was significantly greater than findings for both trocar technique groups. Tunneling method and depth had an interaction effect on the difference in IPP measured before and after tube removal; compared with SC-TRO and LD-CARM group differences, the SC-CARM group difference was significantly greater, but the LD-TRO group difference was similar. More intermittent air leakage was associated with the 2 forceps techniques than with the 2 trocar techniques.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Trocar-implemented thoracostomy tube placement in canine cadavers resulted in less air leakage than the forceps method. Air leakage upon tube removal was less pronounced for the LD-CARM technique than the SC-CARM technique. The LD-TRO technique is recommended to prevent iatrogenic pneumothorax in dogs.