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Information for Parents

Esophageal Atresia and Tracheoesophageal Fistula

  • What is this disease?

    • Oesophageal atresia (OA) is a condition where a short section of the oesophageus has not formed and it is not connected to the stomach. The food cannot pass from the throat to the stomach. The lower end of esophageus is either blind (pure Esophageal atresia) or communicates with trachea (Tracheo-oesophageal fistula). There is a rare H type of fistula also described.

  • How it is diagnosed?

    • Antenatal scan is suggestive in many cases. Clinical examination after birth and x-ray with a nasogastric tube is diagnostic.

  • How it is treated?

    • It is treated by surgery, in which reconstruction is done.

  • When it should be operated?

    • It should be done after stabilization of newborn and is commonly done within 24-48h of birth.

  • Are there other alternative methods of treatment?

    • In indicated cases, surgery is the only treatment option.

  • What all I need to know before my child surgery?

    • Read “All you need to know before your child’s surgery” information booklet in website

  • How is the surgery done?

    • Surgery is done by either open thoracotomy or thoracoscopic repair(TREAT).In both the methods, the fistula with trachea ,if present, is ligated and esophageus is joined with upper blind end. If length is short, then diversion in terms of gastrostomy and cervical esophagostomy is done. H -type is managed by cervical or thoracic approach.

  • Remarks

    • For more details of surgery, contact your surgeon.

  • Related Photographs and videos

    • Few photographs of steps done by me and video link are given here for learning purposes.

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