The History of the Yankauer Suction Tip and Where Med Tech Is Today

Medicine is an ever-changing landscape. As technology improves, new equipment is created that performs better, is safer, and easier to use. Yet, some devices withstand the test of time and have been with us for decades.


History of the Yankauer Tip

Invented circa 1907, the Yankauer suction tip remains the most commonly used piece of suction equipment in the world. Sidney Yankauer began work in the outpatient surgery department at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York in the late 1800s, specializing in ENT. He invented many medical devices that greatly impacted the profession during that time, but he is best known for his rigid suction catheter, the Yankauer tip. It was originally designed to help clear the surgical field during a tonsillectomy. However, its use has expanded to include many surgical procedures, as well as in-hospital and prehospital oropharyngeal suctioning.


Often made of plastic or stainless steel, the Yankauer catheter is characterized by small holes in a bulbous tip designed to remove fluid while minimizing damage to the surrounding tissues. The catheter is curved, making it maneuverable and easy to grasp.


Yet, even durable equipment like the Yankauer tip can evolve and improve through technological advances and research. The result? A new generation in suction catheters.


A New Generation

Medicine is one of the most technologically sophisticated areas of science, and has changed drastically over the past hundred years. And a great example of this evolving arena can be seen in even the most basic of medical tools: the suction tip.


Although the Yakauer suction tip has been the standard for many years, new designs, stronger, more durable materials, and valuable input from prehospital providers has resulted in suction tips that are more efficient at clearing the airway. And SSCOR is leading the way.

  • Hi-D Suction Tip: This well-designed suction tip has an inner diameter almost twice as large (.25”) as traditional surgical suction tips; nearly as large as the suction tubing itself. It also sports a thumb port, which allows the user great control when suctioning.

  • DuCanto Suction Catheter: Often, new devices are created in response to new techniques. Such is the case with the SSCOR DuCanto Catheter. Dr. James DuCanto developed a technique for clearing the airway called SALAD (Suction Assisted Laryngoscopy and Airway Decontamination). The SSCOR DuCanto Catheter was developed with a large internal diameter, no thumb port and a series of ‘bends’ that allow it to be placed at the base of the oropharynx and left there, removing fluids that may continue to flow into the airway, during intubation.

New Techniques

Improved designs also usher in improvements in technique. And one of the newest trends in suction is called the SALAD technique. Suction Assisted Laryngoscopy and Airway Decontamination (SALAD) not only provides greater efficiency in clearing the airway, but results in better patient outcomes and a reduction in airway complications.


By employing new tools and advanced techniques, we are changing the suction landscape and improving patient care. So, check our video and get on board!


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