Primary esophageal repair for Boerhaave's syndrome whatever the free interval between perforation and treatment

Jacques Jougon, Tarun Mc Bride, Frédéric Delcambre, Antonio Minniti, Jean-François Velly
European Journal of Cardio-thoracic Surgery 2004, 25 (4): 475-9

OBJECTIVES: Boerhaave's syndrome is the most sinister cause of esophageal perforation responsible with mortality rate ranging from 20 to 30%. Combination of mediastinal contamination with microorganisms, gastric acid and digestives enzymes, long free interval between injury and initiation of treatment causes severe mediastinitis which is fatal in most untreated cases. The aim of this paper is to emphasize primary esophageal repair and resuscitation whatever the free interval from rupture and repair.

METHODS: A retrospective review of patients treated for Boerhaave's syndrome in our department from January 1980 to February 2003 was performed. The principle of treatment was surgical treatment and avoidance of esophageal exclusion or esophagectomy whichever was possible.

RESULTS: There were 25 patients (17 males and 8 females). All patients were operated on by primary esophageal repair, except for three who underwent immediate exclusion of the esophagus and one patient who deceased on arrival before being operated. Patients were classified according to free interval between perforation and treatment: group 1 (n=9; 36%) within the 24 h (range from 12 to 24 h) and group 2 (n=16; 64%) more than 24 h (range from 2 to 17 days). Altogether 6 patients deceased (24%). In hospital mortality rate for groups 1 and 2 was, respectively, 44% (four patients) and 13% (two patients), not significantly different. Mean hospital stay was 63 days. Two patients developed anastomotic leakage needing esophagectomy and retrosternal coloplasty in one or more steps. One patient developed pleural abscess treated by percutaneous drainage. Three patients presented temporary symptomatic esophageal stenosis, of whom one underwent dilation.

CONCLUSIONS: Long free interval before treatment does not preclude primary esophageal repair in Boerhaave's syndrome. Esophageal exclusion may be more often than not avoided in most cases.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article


You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Related Papers

Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read

Save your favorite articles in one place with a free QxMD account.


Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"