To the Editor:—
The article by Peter Safar, MD (208:1008, 1969), states: "orotracheal and nasotracheal tubes have been left in place for as long as two weeks without serious complications."The ear, nose, and throat literature is replete with cases of orotracheal and nasotracheal intubation as causes of death, as causes of tracheal necrosis, and as causes of many other serious complications. Certainly if an emergency airway has to be established, and this is a convenient way to do so, then these tubes can be inserted. But, if the tube is to remain in for any length of time, or if the patient is awake, coughing, tugging, or choking on the tube, then the tube should be removed and/or a tracheotomy should be performed.The use of tubes for more than a few hours is to be condemned.