A neonate in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) receiving oxygen via nasal prongs (cannulae) is at considerable risk for nasal trauma. In some cases the injuries can be disfiguring which may be disturbing to the parents.


The most important risk factor is prolonged use, but injury can occur after just a few days.


Some authors have associated injuries with prematurity (which may be associated with prolonged use) or with excessive pressure (ill-fitted, too tight, etc)



(1) redness (erythema)

(2) crusting

(3) excoriations

(4) laceration of the skin over the alae nasi

(5) necrosis and/or ulceration of the nasal septum

(6) bleeding

(7) flaring of the nostrils

(8) snubbing of the nose


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