Changing trends in neonatal subglottic stenosis

S S Choi, G H Zalzal
Otolaryngology—Head and Neck Surgery 2000, 122 (1): 61-3

OBJECTIVES: To determine whether there are any changes in the incidence and management of neonatal subglottic stenosis (SGS).

METHODS: A retrospective chart review of 416 infants who were admitted to the neonatal intensive care unit of the Children's National Medical Center between July 1, 1995, and June 30, 1996, was carried out. The incidence of airway obstruction requiring anterior cricoid split or placement of tracheotomy tube was determined and compared with the incidence studied 10 years ago at the same institution.

RESULTS: One of 416 neonates required surgical intervention for airway obstruction caused by SGS, for an overall neonatal SGS incidence of 0.24%. When only the neonates who were intubated for 48 hours or longer were considered, the incidence of SGS was 0.49% (1/204). In neonates who were intubated for 48 hours or longer and survived, the incidence of SGS was 0.63% (1/160). This is in comparison with the incidences of 0.65% (3/462), 1.5% (3/195), and 1.9% (3/159), respectively, seen in a study done at the Children's National Medical Center 10 years ago. Five infants in this current study required placement of a tracheotomy tube for reasons other than SGS. Two infants needed tracheotomy tube placement for micrognathia, and 3 others for central hypotonia, an omphalocele that required multiple surgical procedures, and choanal atresia with a serious heart anomaly, which was a manifestation of CHARGE association. None of these 5 infants had evidence of SGS at rigid endoscopy preceding the tracheotomy tube placement.

CONCLUSION: The incidence and management of neonatal SGS remain unchanged during this study period when compared with those of 10 years ago.

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