Modified Seldinger technique for the insertion of standard chest tubes

Edward Altman, Alon Ben-Nun, William Curtis, Lael Anson Best*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Closed tube thoracostomy is a standard procedure for the evacuation of air, blood, or other materials from the pleural space. This paper describes a modification of the Seldinger technique that facilitates chest tube insertion. Either a Nelaton or Thieman catheter is threaded into the side drainage hole and out the tip of a standard Argyle-type chest tube. After using the clamp to insert the catheter into the pleural space through a previously dissected tract, the catheter serves as a guide over which the chest tube is inserted. The technique is simple to use, effective, and safe. It employs standard, inexpensive materials to insert chest tubes in such a way as to minimize the potential traumatic complications inherent in other techniques.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)354-355
Number of pages2
JournalAmerican Journal of Surgery
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2001
Externally publishedYes


  • Argyle-type chest tube
  • Chest tube
  • Pleural drainage
  • Seldinger technique
  • Thieman catheter
  • Thoracostomy


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