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Cleaning Your Tracheostomy Tube Inner Cannula

Cleaning Your Tracheostomy Tube Inner Cannula
Laura Castricone, CRT

A tracheostomy tube is placed in a sterile area of the airway via a surgical incision in the front of the neck.  It is essential to perform daily cleaning to keep the tube clean, to prevent cross-contamination and/or infection and to prevent blockage of the tube. The inner cannula, which is in almost all trach tubes, is removable and can be cleaned or changed daily.

Cleaning Trach tube with a Disposable Inner Cannula

  • Using gloves, remove the inner cannula daily or several times per day and replace it with a new one. 
  • Make sure the new inner cannula is “locked” in place by squeezing tabs or turning to lock in place 
  • If by chance, you run out of disposable inner cannulas, you can follow the procedure below until your new supply arrives.

Cleaning Trach tube with a Permanent Inner Cannula

  • This may need to be performed once or several times per day depending on patient needs 
  • Prepare the area by getting out gloves and trach care kit (which contains all or most of the following: plastic tray, gloves, small brush, twill to be used as a trach tie) 
  • Remove inner cannula and place in tray 
  • Soak your inner cannula in peroxide for about 8 minutes 
  • If a brush is provided in your kit, scrub your inner cannula inside and out with the brush and peroxide, if no brush is provided, just let cannula soak. 
  • Once cannula is clean, rinse with sterile water, shake off excess and replace inner cannula into trach tube 
  • Remember to “lock” your inner cannula back into place by lining up the “dots” or turning until you feel it click into place.

With either procedure above, try to avoid having your new or clean inner cannula come in contact with any surface. Always use gloves when handling or changing your inner cannula. Be gentle when removing or replacing inner cannula. Never force a cannula into the tube; if it will not go in easily, contact your doctor, home health care nurse or clinician as soon as possible.

All You Need To Know About Tracheostomy



Author Profile: Laura Castricone, Respiratory Therapist

Laura Castricone (Certified Respiratory Therapist)

My name is Laura Castricone and I am a Certified Respiratory Therapist. I have been practicing in the state of Connecticut since 1992. I have worked in several aspects of respiratory care including sleep medicine, critical care, rehab, and home care. I earned my respiratory certification at Quinnipiac University in Hamden, CT. Prior to becoming an RT, I attended the University of Connecticut pursuing a degree in English but left Uconn in my junior year to work with my father in the restaurant business. I stayed with him for over a dozen years. An education, by the way, that can never be bought! Once I married and had children, the restaurant business no longer fit my lifestyle. When my children were one and two years old, I decided to go back to school and that is where my career in respiratory care began. This career has been very rewarding and I have been blessed to meet some extraordinary people along the way. I grew up in Waterbury, CT, and now live in Litchfield County, CT with my husband and our crazy Jack Russell terrier, Hendrix. My hobbies include antiquing, gardening, writing plays, and painting miniature paintings.



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HPFY Laura Castricone, CRT

Laura Castricone, CRT

LinkedIn Profile My name is Laura Castricone and I am a Certified Respiratory Therapist. I have been practicing in the state of Connecticut since 1992. I have worked in several aspects of respiratory ...

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