Indexed on: 15 May '15Published on: 15 May '15Published in: Annals of Saudi medicine
Repair of congenital diaphragmatic hernia (CDH) is ideally delayed until ventilatory parameters are stabilized and patients are switched to conventional ventilation. However, in selected high-risk patients, repair can be performed earlier while they are still on high-frequency oscillatory ventilation (HFOV).A retrospective review of all CDH cases treated in our tertiary referral center between 1997 and 2013.In 1997, we started repairing selected high-risk CDH cases under HFOV with or without inhaled nitric oxide (iNO). All repairs were performed once the infants' blood gas levels were acceptable. The infants were gradually weaned to conventional ventilation followed by extubation as their ventilatory parameters improved. Their records were reviewed to determine the group-wide outcomes.Between 1997 and 2013, 55 infants with CDH were treated in our institute; of these 12 high-risk cases were repaired under HFOV/iNO combinations and 1 was repaired without iNO. All patients had significant pulmonary hypertension and 8 had herniated livers. The mean age at repair was 9.1 (6.3) days. Two mortalities occurred at the first and tenth postoperative days. Among the remaining 11 survivors, the median ventilation and hospitalization days were 29.5 (11-84) and 45.5 (25-107), respectively, and the median duration under HFOV and conventional ventilation days were 15 (9-40) and 12 (3-47), respectively.CDH repair can be performed earlier under HFOV and iNO. The possible advantages are earlier restoration of normal anatomy and earlier start of enteral feeding while minimizing the risk of lung injury.