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Aryepiglottoplasty for laryngomalacia: 100 consecutive cases

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  08 March 2006

S. C. Toynton
Department of Otolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery, Derriford Hospital, Plymouth, UK.
M. W. Saunders
Department of Otolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery, United Bristol Healthcare Trust, UK.
C. M. Bailey
Department of Paediatric Otolaryngology, Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children, London, UK.


A retrospective review of the notes of 100 consecutive patients who had undergone aryepiglottoplasty for laryngomalacia, at Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children, was undertaken. Fifty-six were male, 44 female and 47 were under three months of age. Indications for surgery were oxygen desaturation below 92 per cent and feeding difficulties causing failure to thrive. Forty-seven patients had other pathology contributing to their airway compromise or feeding problems. Improvement in stridor after one month was achieved in 86/91 (94.5 per cent) being abolished completely in 50/91 (55 per cent). Of the 25 per cent of patients whose symptoms took more than one week to resolve, 16/22 (63.6 per cent) were later found to have a serious neurological condition. Feeding was improved in 42 of 58 patients (72.4 per cent) who had a pre-operative feeding difficulty. The complication rate was low, with only five out of 86 (10 per cent) experiencing initial worsening of the airway and six per cent having aspiration of early feeds before improvement occurred.

Endoscopic aryepiglottoplasty remains the operation of choice for patients with severe laryngomalacia, however, in the presence of neurological disease surgery is less likely to be successful.

Research Article
© Royal Society of Medicine Press Limited 2001

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