Non-Invasive Ventilation leading up to a Tracheostomy
Every three months I will be given a comprehensive set of Lung Function Tests to see how I’m doing compared with what would be expected in someone of my age and build.
When my intercostal muscles become too weak to provide sufficient breathing-support when I’m lying down (which is the time my diaphragm is unable to help) I’ll start having Non-Invasive Ventilation – probably using some form of mask – at night.
At some stage, my Respitory Team and I will decide that I should undergo a Tracheostomy – a relatively simple procedure during which an opening will be created at the front of my neck so that a tube can be inserted into my windpipe (the ‘trache’ that gives the procedure its name). From then on, that tube can be connected to a ventilator, which is basically just a fan pumping fresh air into my lungs. Because my lungs themselves should remain fully capable of absorbing oxygen and releasing carbon-dioxide – they just won’t anymore be able to inflate and deflate on their own – I should never need oxygen. So, the ventilator mechanics can be very basic and reliable.
By that stage I will have had a quadruple-ostomy (colostomy, cystostomy, gastrostomy, and tracheostomy) and will be ostomied out. From then on I will be able to simply sit back, relax, and enjoy the full benefits of the complete replumbing of the inputs and outputs to my body’s Power Generation System…