View Full Version : Man Saves Own Life, Uses Steak Knife for At-Home Tracheotomy

05-09-2008, 07:38
This is impressive. If he was unable to move air, his window of opportunity to correct the situation would have been rather short.

Man Saves Own Life, Uses Steak Knife for At-Home Tracheotomy

Friday , May 09, 2008


An Omaha man struggling to breathe used a steak knife to perform an at-home tracheotomy.

Steve Wilder says he thought he was going to die when he awoke one night last week and couldn't breathe.

Wilder says he didn't call 911 because he didn't think help would arrive in time. So, the 55-year-old says, he got a steak knife from the kitchen and made a small hole in his throat, allowing air to gush in.

Wilder suffered from throat cancer and related breathing problems several years ago. About that time, he had an episode where he couldn't breathe because his air passages swelled shut. He says that's what happened this time around.

Doctors don't expect Wilder to suffer any adverse effects from the tracheotomy once it's healed.


05-09-2008, 08:59
Not sure but an educated guess....he had a trach previously and cut through the scar which is really only skin and re-entered his airway. I have used the technique myself on previously trached patients.
Not taking anything away from his heroic procedure, just nice to know all of the facts and true degree of difficulty that the press likes to sensationalize.


05-09-2008, 09:17
Granted, the procedure itself is not difficult. What I found interesting is that I've never heard of anyone performing the procedure on themselves. It is always easier 'operating' on someone other than yourself; "operator feels no pain".

Red Flag 1
05-13-2008, 23:15
if it worth saying, it will be quoted.