Congenital tracheal stenosis: A review of 22 patients from 1965 to 1987

D. S. Loeff, R. M. Filler*, I. Vinograd, S. H. Ein, W. G. Williams, C. R. Smith, A. Bahoric

*Corresponding author for this work

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Twenty-two infants with congenital tracheal stenosis (CTS) were treated in our hospital between 1965 and 1987. Diagnosis was confirmed by endoscopic and radiographic methods. Patients had a spectrum of tracheobronchial lesions from localized stenosis to more complex deformities involving the carina and bronchi. Other anomalies were found in all patients with the occurrence of vascular slings or rings in 11 patients (50%). Six infants treated nonoperatively died from severe CTS and other lethal anomalies. Five of 16 patients (31%) treated surgically survived. Localized CTS in four cases was treated by dilatation, tracheostomy, or tracheal resection with primary anastomosis (two survivors 2 non-survivors). Funnel-shaped deformities and extensive tracheobroncial stenosis were treated by tracheal reconstruction using a variety of autogenous tissue and prosthetic grafts (three survivors, nine non-survivors). The overall mortality was 77%. A new intratracheal stent was used in two patients. The stent was a flexible steel spring covered with a silicone rubber sheath. In one patient, it was placed within the trachea at the time of repair and removed later with the bronchoscope. A stent was used in a second patient with intermittent airway obstruction following an esophageal tracheoplasty. In this case, the device failed to alleviate the obstruction, and the infant expired from progressive respiratory failure. Issues of importance in the management of infants with CTS are: (1) adequate evaluation of the tracheobronchial tree, (2) awareness that tracheobronchography may precipitate further respiratory decompensation, (3) assessment of vascular and other anomalies requiring surgical correction, and (4) selection of an appropriate therapeutic approach.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)744-748
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Pediatric Surgery
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 1988


  • Congenital tracheal stenosis
  • left pulmonary artery sling
  • tracheal reconstruction
  • vascular ring


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